Health For Everyone | Ō Tātou Hauora
“Spending on public health measures must be seen as an investment, not a cost burden, and is critical to reducing demand for health care services.” said says Sir Collin Tukuitonga, President of the New Zealand College of Public Health Medicine (NZCPHM).
“A holistic public health approach enables individuals and communities to be healthy. To ensure that good health is shared fairly amongst everyone, it is important to understand the determinants of health and wellbeing” said says Sir Collin.
The NZCPHM’s Health for Everyone | Ō Tātou Hauora policy document outlines the four most important public health priorities to improve health and achieve equity in Aotearoa New Zealand, and includes evidence-based strategies for achieving each:
- Stabilise climate changes with decisive mitigation, optimise healthy adaptation and ensure healthy environments.
- Fulfil the purpose of the Pae Ora (Healthy Futures) Act 2022.
- Stop health harm from the commercial determinants of health.
- Increase ongoing investment in the publicly funded health system.
The four public health priorities are interlinked, and the recommended actions are considered to be realistic, achievable, cost-effective and aligned with national goals. These priorities demand a future-focused, long-term governance approach.
“Climate changes are the biggest threat to the health and wellbeing of people and communities in Aotearoa New Zealand, in both the short and long term,” says Sir Collin, “Aotearoa New Zealand’s climate actions must accelerate so that we fairly contribute to the global efforts to limit planetary heating.”
“Achieving health equity for Māori, with urgency, is a priority. We believe this can only be addressed by providing for tino rangatiratanga for Māori, and continuing the mahi that Te Aka Whai Ora has begun.”
“We also strongly support the goal of achieving a smokefree Aotearoa. We are concerned that the Smokefree Environments and Regulated Products Act 1990 is to be repealed, and urge that consideration is given to retaining the ‘smokefree generation’ policy to prohibit sales of smoked tobacco products to people born after 1 January 2009.”
“The health and wellbeing of people and communities need to be at the centre in all planning and policy making, taking a Health in All Policies approach” says Sir Collin. “The voices of tangata whenua and other priority populations must be prioritised.”