Māori Health Update
Kia ora koutou e te whānau,
Last week was a huge week for the health system! The Government announced significant change to New Zealand’s health sector, and the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine is continuing to scale up.
I’d like to share with you a brief update on what this means for Māori Health.
Health and Disability System Reform
On Wednesday, the Government outlined major changes to the health system, including:
- All DHBs will be replaced by one national organisation, Health New Zealand
- A new Māori Health Authority will be established and will have the power to commission health services, monitor the state of Māori health and develop policy
- A new Public Health Agency will be created
- A strengthened Ministry of Health will monitor performance of the system and advise Government
The aim of the reforms is to strengthen New Zealand’s health system into a single nationwide health service which provides consistent, high-quality health services for everyone.
In response, we released this statement to indicate we’re encouraged by the moves, but that we’ll keep a watching brief on the rollout to ensure it addresses the health inequities faced by Māori.
Proposal for a Smokefree Aotearoa 2025 Action Plan
The Government has also launched a consultation document on its Smokefree Aotearoa 2025 Action Plan. This consultation is a chance for Māori voices to have more say in decision making around tobacco and the future we’re creating for our mokopuna.
One of the proposals, for instance, is for stronger Māori governance and community action in the tobacco control system. Reducing nicotine levels in tobacco and introducing a smokefree generation policy, so people born after a certain date can’t buy tobacco, are some of the other proposals you can share your whakaaro on.
You can view the proposals in full and have your say here.
COVID-19 Vaccine Rollout