May 24, 2021
Maori vaccine numbers dip
The co-chair of Māori Pandemic response group Te Whakakaupapa Urutā says the vaccine rollout is missing its Māori targets.
Dr Rawiri Jansen, who quit a government advisory group on the rollout because he felt Māori advice wasn’t being heeded, says over the past week the percentage of those being vaccinated who were Māori or Pacific dropped from 12 per cent to 9 per cent, and Māori are less likely to walk into a vaccination centre without an appointment.
Because only about 70,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine are coming in each week the programme hasn’t fully ramped up, and the tightness of supply also means some groups have faced repeated postponements.
"We can lose the goodwill of whānau and communities so a little bit worried about that. We can see that has happened a few times in a few places and we really want to minimise that. If our whānau can be told 'it's coming, it is going to be there this week,;' and we deliver, that is really important," he says.
Dr Jansen says for rather than just targeting kuia and kaumatua, a Māori strategy should vaccinate whānau by whānau.
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