Wellington.Scoop » Better health resources needed for Pacific community in eastern Porirua
Pacific Health Plus News
“The establishment of a new health system and the appointment of interim Maori and Pacific Chief Executive Officers have brought the promise of a more equitable and responsive health system closer to reality,” says Fiso John Fiso, President of Pacific Health Plus, a primary healthcare provider in Eastern Porirua. “It has brought a lot of optimism to Maori and Pacific communities.”
“But time is running out as we look forward to seeing the successful execution of the ‘do better’ plan and the establishment of a health system that ‘recognizes the diversity of needs and ensures equity of outcomes’ .
“Appointments have been made, including a director of Pacific Health at the third level of the executive; the new health strategy is approved, which recognizes that the needs of the Pacific are not well met; and now – we urgently need action on the ground.
“Because from where I stand, change is needed quickly to alter the daily realities of the Pacific people in Cannons Creek, East Porirua.
“The Pacific Community in Porirua is the largest in New Zealand, outside of South Auckland, and it has made many promises over the years with very little to deliver. 21% of the population identifies with the Pacific, 49% live in the very disadvantaged area of eastern Porirua.
“Not only does this group have the worst health outcomes, they are the only population group whose statistics have deteriorated, despite promises, nominations, strategies and investments.
“Adult mortality rates are 74% higher than average; the life expectancy of babies is the lowest of any group in the Wellington region. Cardiovascular emergency admission rates are the highest and diabetes is three times more common.
“What COVID has confirmed to us is that the Pacific Community is most vulnerable to health outbreaks and continues to be overrepresented in hospital deaths.
“Health reforms indicate that this will change for communities in the Pacific. But we must ensure that these changes are timely, appropriately resourced, and implemented by Pacific-for-Pacific.
“We have to see the measures improve. We need to see the 10-year trend of deteriorating health for Pacific people in Porirua come to a head. We need less diabetes and heart disease and longer life expectancy, in line with trends in other population groups.
“The time has come, the public has been galvanized – they recognize the inequality, see the need for change and recognize that our Pacific New Zealanders have the same right as all other New Zealanders to lead healthy lives. and well filled.
“So I call on those responsible for the success of this massive reform, bring the change you promised, and bring it quickly, before more lives are lost,” Fiso said.