April 19, 2021
Jansen quits government advisory panel
The co-chair of Māori pandemic response group Te Rōpū Whakakaupapa Urutā has quit the government immunisation implementation advisory group because he feels his voice wasn’t being heard.
Dr Rawiri Jansen says he was particularly frustrated by the refusal to adopt an age adjuster, so Māori could be included in the high-risk elderly group at 50 or 55 rather than 65.
"The work we are doing on the advisory group wasn't influential enough so if it's not working the advice could be me and the advice I am giving, that's possible, or it could be the advice is going to the wrong place, and part of me is like, 'whatever, if it's not working, get out of the way,'" he says.
The government says Māori health providers have the discretion to vaccinate people earlier if they have underlying health conditions, but Dr Jansen says the majority of Māori still rely on mainstream health services.
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