Big Boost for Maori Health Providers

  • John Delamare
Associate Minister of Health

Associate Health Minister, Hon Tuariki Delamere, said today this week's launch of the $6.7 million, three-year Maori Provider Development Scheme is a further positive initiative in the provision of quality health services to Maori.

More than 200 Maori health providers all over the country will receive information this week from the regional divisions of the Transitional Health Authority on how to apply for funds from the scheme, which is intended to accelerate the development and organisational abilities of the Maori health and disability workforce.

"Maori are more affected than non-Maori by low birthweight, sudden infant death syndrome, meningitis, asthma, hearing impairment and accidental injuries. Maori have the highest overall death rate from heart disease and too many end up in hospital from respiratory disease.

"This scheme will enable Maori providers to deliver quality health care to Maori more effectively, so improving their health and wellbeing.

"Funding for the scheme, which was announced in the Budget, is $6.7 million, excluding GST, for the 1997/98 financial year with a further $10 million committed for the following two years."

Mr Delamere said the scheme had four funding categories -

  • Maori Health Scholarships to get better trained, better qualified Maori working in Maori health
  • Provider Assistance to develop sound administration and information systems for Maori providers
  • Workforce and Service Development pilots to identify opportunities for increasing and integrating health services so that these services are easier for Maori to use and at lower cost
  • Best Practice and Procedure models that will establish processes for ongoing review and evaluation of the services Maori health providers are delivering.

Mr Delamere said the Transitional Health Authority will administer the scheme and receive funding applications, while the Ministry of Health will monitor the results of the scheme.