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Progress being made in Pacific health

Hon Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga

Associate Minister of Health

31 August 2015

Progress being made in Pacific health

A new report on the health of Pacific people shows good progress is being made in some areas, Associate Health Minister Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga says.

The ‘Ala Mo’ui: Pathways to Pacific Health and Wellbeing 2014-2018 plan focuses on improving the health and wellbeing of Pacific people.

The plan allows the Ministry of Health to measure progress areas including oral health, mental health and addiction and quitting smoking rates.

The six-month progress report is the first time data for this range of Pacific health indicators has been provided in one document.

“‘Ala Mo’ui is helping us to better understand the reasons behind the gap in health outcomes between Pacific people and the New Zealand population as a whole and the best ways of addressing these,” Mr Lotu-Iiga says.

Figures for the Pacific population are better than those for the total New Zealand population when it comes to accessing care from a nurse or GP, being assessed for cardiovascular disease and for specialist referrals for children identified as obese.

“These are significant achievements which show that some good work is being done across the health sector, particularly in improving access for Pacific people to primary health care.

“However, it is clear that there are still too many Pacific people developing diabetes and too many children suffering from tooth decay and obesity,” Mr Lotu-Iiga says.

“This is why ‘Ala Mo’ui is so important. By monitoring progress across a range of areas we can identify which initiatives are working well for the Pacific population and how these can be shared with DHBs around the country.”

ends

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