Major review of health system launched
Health Minister Dr David Clark has announced a wide-ranging review designed to future-proof our health and disability services.
“New Zealanders are generally well served by our health services, particularly when they are seriously unwell or injured. Overall we are living longer and healthier lives - but we also face major challenges,” says David Clark.
“The Review of the New Zealand Health and Disability Sector will be wide-ranging and firmly focused on a fairer future. It will look at the way we structure, resource and deliver health services – not just for the next few years but for decades to come.
“We need to face up to the fact that our health system does not deliver equally well for all. We know our Māori and Pacific peoples have worse health outcomes and shorter lives. That is something we simply cannot accept.
“We also need to get real about the impact of a growing and aging population, and the increase in chronic diseases like cancer and diabetes. Those issues in turn create pressure on services and the health workforce that need to be addressed for the long term sustainability of our public health service.
“The Review will include a strong focus on primary and community based care. We want to make sure people get the health care they need to stay well. Early intervention and prevention work can also help take pressure off our hospitals and specialist services.
“People rightly have high expectations of our public health service. As Health Minister I want to ensure we can meet those expectations now and into the future,” says David Clark.
The Review will be chaired by Heather Simpson, who is perhaps best known as Chief of Staff to Helen Clark from 1999-2008 but also has a background in health economics. The Review will provide an interim report by the end of July 2019 and a final report by 31 January 2020.
NOTE: Draft Terms of Reference are attached.