April 26, 2017
Boost for Maori mental health research
Health Research Council CEO Kath McPherson says a $2 million project on mental health problems among Maori and Pacific young people should help policymakers develop better services for rangatahi and their communities.
The project is the council’s first initiative as part of the Global Alliance for Chronic Diseases, which includes some of the world’s largest public research funding agencies.
Professor McPherson says conditions like depression, anxiety, schizophrenia and bipolar disorders are complex, and the researchers won’t look for quick fixes.
They’re also not after one size fits all solutions, especially for conditions where Maori rates are above the norm.
"Different cultural backgrounds need a different response in terms of services that are going to be helpful. I don't think one should be embarrassed about the rates. I think we should be challenged by that and say what can we do with a community, both as health providers but everybody do to make this better," she says.
Professor McPherson says Maori researchers are encouraged to suggest projects for funding, and they will also get the opportunity through the alliance to share findings and data with other first nations researchers.
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