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Clarion Call From Health Navigator Charitable Trust For Health Sector To Back National Online Health Content Hub

As the Health Navigator NZ website breaks the 1 million visits per month mark, its parent trust is calling for the health sector to back a national online health content hub.

The Health Navigator Charitable Trust (HNCT) seeks collaborators to co-create, help fund, share resources, promote and use the hub.

In partnership with KidsHealth NZ and HealthInfo Canterbury, the HNCT wants to stop health providers reinventing the wheel, save millions on resource development and improve health outcomes for all New Zealanders.

The partners need others to join them in developing the national health content hub, which will act as a central repository for trusted, New Zealand focused, high-quality health content and self-care resources for all New Zealanders.

Benefits of the hub include improved access to more understandable health information for the public. This is desperately needed to reach more equitable outcomes for Maori, Pasifika, people with disabilities and other high-needs populations. These groups will be prioritised for content co-creation, development and delivery.

GP and Health Navigator NZ executive director Janine Bycroft says the three groups have been working on the concept for two years, with subject matter experts, including Māori and health consumers, co-creating resources.

Seamless sharing of consistent health messages
The hub will enable seamless sharing and updating of information via API across platforms, so that organisations can repurpose the content for their specific needs and audiences, Dr Bycroft says.

White label content — where recipients can rebrand it as their own — will be contributed to the hub by approved content partners and overseen by a national editorial team to ensure principles, quality standards and an equity focus are maintained.

“Content can also be delivered in ways that enable more timely care, decision-making or treatment, including through apps, portals, websites, e-therapy, personalised monitoring and wearable devices,” Dr Bycroft says.

Sector failing to maximise digital solutions
The collaborative and its supporters say the sector is failing to maximise the potential of digital solutions to transform the consumer experience.

“The sector could do a much better job if there was a national collaborative working together and focused on putting equity and whanau first,” Dr Bycroft says.

“A hui with representatives from key national organisations including Ministry of Health, National Telehealth Service, Health Info Canterbury, Kids Health NZ/Paediatric Society of NZ, Health Literacy NZ, Te Hiringa Hauora (HPA) and ACC in late 2019 was extremely supportive,” Dr Bycroft says. “but unfortunately progress last year was slowed down by COVID, staff changes, and funding constraints.

Health Navigator NZ, which is endorsed by the RNZCGP, has Health on the Net (HON) accreditation and reached 1,176,459 pageviews last month, has earned a great deal of respect and credibility over the years.

“We and our partners are ideally suited to lead this initiative for the country. It would be unthinkable to let all the goodwill and work we have built up go to waste!

The idea of the hub came about from seeing the national flood of multiple versions of public-facing information, all with varying degrees of quality (safety) and health literacy.

“From diabetes, hand washing and vaccinations to mental health topics, and everything in between, organisations have been reinventing the wheel rather than sharing key content and building on the innovation of others,” Dr Bycroft says.

“This ad-hoc approach leads to significant duplication, fragmentation, inefficiencies and inconsistent messaging, imposing millions of dollars of unnecessary costs on taxpayers.”

Anyone wanting to join or support the hub collaboration should contact Dr Bycroft.


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