Transforming the healthcare system of Aotearoa New Zealand

Te Pae Tata Interim New Zealand Health Plan [PDF, 5.8 MB] sets out the first two years of action (2022-2024) that builds the foundations of a sustainable, affordable, and unified health system, which will better serve whānau.

Our new health system 

The foundations of our new health system, outlined in the 2022 Pae Ora (Healthy Futures) legislation are: 

  • Embedding a Tiriti-dynamic health system 
  • Health equity matters for everyone 
  • Implementing a population health approach 
  • Ensuring a sustainable health service delivery system 

What Te Aka Whai Ora will focus on is: 

  • Pae ora - better health in our communities 
  • Kahu taurima - maternity and early years 
  • Mate pukupuku - people with cancer 
  • Māuiuitanga taumaha - people living with chronic health conditions 
  • Oranga hinengaro - people living with mental distress, illness, and addictions.  

Te Aka Whai Ora will: 

  • Work with Te Whatu Ora to design and deliver services to improve Māori health 
  • Work with Manatū Hauora and Te Puni Kōkiri to monitor outcomes for Māori 
  • Support Iwi Māori Partnership Boards to strengthen the voice of whānau 
  • Commission te ao Māori solutions and services developed by Māori for Māori 
  • Improve service delivery and outcomes for Māori 
  • Promote public health and commission public health programmes.  

We acknowledge the past and those with the vision for change

In 2019, the failings of the health sector to implement Te Tiriti o Waitangi were outlined in the Hauora Report, from the Waitangi Tribunal findings of the Wai 2575 claim. 

This first formal claim concerning the health sector's unjust treatment of Māori, was presented to the Tribunal by a coalition of Māori Primary Health Organisations in 2005.

The grievance pointed to inadequate funding and support of Māori providers by the Crown compared with non-Māori providers, a failure which breaches Treaty principles of active protection, partnership, tino rangatiratanga, and equity.

In particular, the claimants argued that Māori were not able to exercise tino rangatiratanga in the design and delivery of primary healthcare, and that the continued poor outcomes for Māori health points to systemic problems in the primary healthcare sector.

This was the spearhead for reforms

The Tribunal recommended a series of principles be applied across the entire health system, and the Hauora Report became a catalyst to reform the public healthcare system and improve health outcomes for Māori.

This resulted in new legislation, the Pae Ora Healthy Futures Act 2022, and established two new entities on 1 July 2022, Te Aka Whai Ora and Te Whatu Ora to replace, over a 2-year transition, the current 20 District Health Boards (DHBs). This generational reset will protect, promote, and improve the health of all New Zealanders. Significantly, Te Tiriti is embedded in the legislation to acknowlege te ao Māori, mana motuhake and reflect Māori aspirations.

The changes made through these reforms will mean Māori living longer and enjoying better health for longer. 

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