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A Shocker for Health Outcomes in Aotearoa

A Shocker for Health Outcomes in Aotearoa says Turia

Tariana Turia, Co-leader and health spokesperson for the Maori Party

Wednesday 20 February 2008

The question who's going to do something about Maori respiratory health, must be a top priority for all political parties says Maori Party health spokesperson, Tariana Turia.

"Today has been a shocker for health outcomes in Aotearoa" said Mrs Turia.

"We have all been appalled at the list of 182 serious mistakes involving patients reported across twelve DHBS" said Mrs Turia.

"Although 'mistake' is hardly an appropriate concept when we look at the tragedies outlined in the report of the Quality Improvement Committee" said Mrs Turia.

"Fatalities like one patient dying after being prescribed another patient’s diabetes medication; or a baby dying after showing heart rate irregularities during labour demand that we take urgent action to achieve standardised, mandatory reporting and publication of all adverse events in hospitals".

"On top of that, to learn that Maori have been dying at a rate of two and a half times that of non-Maori, from asthma and other respiratory conditions is simply unacceptable".

"Our youngest children, our most vulnerable, are in particular risk" said Mrs Turia.

"Today's release from the Asthma and Respiratory Foundation reveals that admissions because of asthma amongst children aged 1 to 4 years old were 60% higher for Maori than non-Maori".

"What on earth is going on, that Maori are experiencing much worse outcomes than their peers? asked Mrs Turia.

"In these times when primary health care is meant to be such a priority, it is outrageous that Maori are dying from respiratory diseases at such disproportionate rates".

“Until the Government addresses the desperate housing conditions and the persistent poverty of income, we will continue to see a serious decline in whanau health” ended Mrs Turia.

Background

* From 2000 to 2004, the rate of Maori dying from respiratory disease (COPD, pneumonia, asthma and bronchiectasis) was 33.8 per 100,000 as compared to non-Maori, at 13.1 per 100,000.


ENDS

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