April 22, 2021
Maori communities to have say in health services
The chair of the Northland District Health Board says the current health system hasn't worked for Māori, and they now have a chance to design and run one that does.
Harry Burkhardt from Ngāti Kuri says the 2000 Public Health and Disability Act was built on a the promise of a primary health strategy that never worked, specially for Māori.
Instead it resulted in 20 district health boards each developing their own systems, and public health organisations which failed to meet Māori needs.
He says the new structure proposed by Health Minister Andrew Little is designed to have a high level of influence from Māori.
"Both those platforms, the Māori Health Authority and HealthNZ are tasked to commission outcomes within our communities, so it takes out a level of intermediaries, whether it's DHBs or PHOs, it's designed to get more traction within our communities, that's the hope," Mr Burkhardt says.
He says what government learned from the Covid lockdown was government agencies had limited reach into communities and it was iwi and hapū who could get there.
Copyright © 2021, UMA Broadcasting Ltd: www.waateanews.com