August 19, 2021
Time to unleash Maori innovation in vax drive
A leading public health expert argues it’s time to let Māori and Pacific health services design and deliver Covid vaccination services for their communities.
Dr Collin Tukuitonga says the current community outbreak of the highly-infectious delta variant should shake people out of their complacency.
He says since the start of the pandemic Māori and Pacific experts have argued for priority treatment for their communities because of the higher odds people live in crowded houses and/ or have underlying health conditions.
"Officials seem to think they know what's best and clearly we have coverage rates that are disappointing. I would have liked us to be much further ahead for rollouts, particularly for Māori and Pasifika community. We should have been around 80 to 90 percent coverage because that is another important way of protecting our whānau," he says.
Dr Tukuitonga says asking people to book a vaccination time doesn’t work for families who struggle to access transport or health services.
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