News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search


Bridging The Gap To Improve Health Outcomes For Māori

“Kanohi ki te kanohi - Kanohi ki te ao hangarau | Face to face and Face to technology.”

Māori-owned technology company Kiwa Digital is making a major investment in its technology to help support improved health outcomes for Māori.

The company is developing its processes and software to enable it to produce accessible health resources for whānau that are framed from a te Ao Māori perspective.

Managing Director Steven Renata says the company is responding to calls to do its duty and help address growing health disparities between Māori and non-Māori:

“Our cultural intelligence apps are helping many thousands of workers connect, respect, and appreciate te Ao Māori within their daily mahi.

“We are now responding to calls from Māori health providers to use our experience and technology to produce culturally relevant resources that share mātauranga Māori at scale - while still modelling the kanohi ki te kanohi experience.

“We see a new future for Aotearoa’s health sector with the normalisation of mātauranga Māori in education, promotion and outcomes. In this way Māori-led solutions can be delivered effectively for the community, whānau, hapū and iwi. “

The planned investment includes developing and digitising mana-enhancing processes, adding interactivity tools that follow tikanga Māori and te reo Māori, and creating a safe and transparent dashboard tool. The goal is to improve access to health services, vaccinations, and medications - including in hard-to-reach areas.

The development will be done nā to kano - from the seed, with four major collaborations underway:

  • Tuku Iho will share intergenerational knowledge in maternal and child wellbeing as a resource for whānau hapū, māma hāpu and māma hou. The project is funded by the Ministry of Health, led by Hāpai Te Hauora, and developed in partnership with Māorilands and most importantly whānau themselves.
  • Ihi, a new app for Procare, Aotearoa’s largest and most diverse co-operative of healthcare professionals serving the largest Māori population enrolled in general practice in Tāmaki Makaurau. The resource will support strategies to reduce inequities and improve health outcomes for Māori.
  • Mama Aroha, an app that provides health professionals, mothers and whānau with information and principles to better understand breastfeeding, is now being enhanced with new tools and its reach extended into Australia.
  • A rangatahi-led project, funded by the Ministry of Education, will throw the challenge to rangatahi. This builds on previous projects to support mental health and help prevent rheumatic fever.

Partners share Kiwa Digital’s enthusiasm. CEO of Hāpai Te Hauora, Selah Hart, says in relation to Tuku Iho:

“We want to link mātauranga Māori - the sets of knowledge that were given to us from our ancestors - and reinvigorate the way it can be applied to everyday living now. This app will be culturally relevant, engaging, trustworthy, and reflective of the holistic nature of maternal health and related kaupapa such as safe sleep and the importance of being smokefree.

‘We have been talking about it a long time and never had the resources or mandate from the Ministry of Health to do it. Good things take time, they take stamina to get there, but this is now a great opportunity for us to test our ideas. It is a mark of the progress of Hāpai and the health care system overall in the use of technology to enable better health outcomes for Māori.”

The collaborations will enable Kiwa Digital to develop its technology to help Māori health providers reach scale while still modelling the kanohi ki te kanohi experience.

“This is where technology framed from a te Ao Māori perspective can bridge the access gap.” says Renata.

About Kiwa Digital

Kiwa Digital is the world’s best cultural creative agency using technology to enable the world’s voices to be heard authentically. For more,


© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


Howard Davis: Emerald Fennell's Promising Young Woman'

The Guardian needed not one, but three reviews to do justice to Fennell's unsettling approach, which indicates exactly how ambiguous and controversial its message really is. More>>

Howard Davis: Jill Trevelyan's Rita Angus

Although Angus has become one of Aotearoa’s best-loved painters, the story of her life remained little known and poorly understood before Jill Trevelyan's acclaimed and revelatory biography, which won the Non Fiction Award at the Montana New Zealand Book Awards in 2009, and has now been republished by Te Papa press. More>>

Howard Davis: The Back of the Painting

Painting conservators are the forensic pathologists of the art world. While they cannot bring their subjects back to life, they do provide fascinating insights into the precise circumstances of a painting's creation, its material authenticity, and constructive methodology. More>>

Howard Davis: Black Panthers on the Prowl

A passionate and gripping political drama from Shaka King, this is an informative and instructive tale of human frailty that centers around the charismatic Chicago Black Panther leader Fred Hampton, who was murdered at the age of twenty-one during a police raid. More>>

Howard Davis: Controlling the High Ground

Stephen Johnson's raw and angry film not only poses important questions with scrupulous authenticity, but also provides a timely reminder of the genocidal consequences of casual bigotry and xenophobia. More>>

Howard Davis: Dryzabone - Robert Conolly's The Dry

After the terrible devastation caused by last year’s bushfires, which prompted hundreds of Australians to shelter in the ocean to escape incineration and destroyed uncountable amounts of wildlife, The Dry has been released during a totally different kind of dry spell. More>>

Howard Davis: Hit the Road, Jack - Chloé Zhao's Nomadland

Nomadland is perhaps the ultimately 'road' movie as it follows a group of dispossessed and disenfranchised vagabonds who find a form of communal refuge in camp sites and trailer parks after the economic contraction of 2008. More>>



  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland