November 06, 2023
False choice in Māori health debate
Veteran Pasifika health leader Sir Collin Tukuitonga has grave concerns for Māori and Pasifika health outcomes under the incoming Government.
Sir Collin, who’s the associate dean Pasifika and the University of Auckland medical school, says both groups have a history of inequitable access to healthcare.
He says the election campaign raised irrelevant arguments about needs-based versus race-based care.
“The new lot are saying ‘we don’t want any targeted programmes, we don’t think the Māori Health Authority is what we want.’ And they want to go back to policies and approaches that we tried in the past and haven’t worked,” Sir Collin says.
He says what’s needed urgently in the health system is more frontline GPs – because children are not getting seen early enough, and end up in hospital.