Collaboration is essential to achieve the best outcomes for all, especially in terms of equity and Māori health advancement. In addition to working with other teams across the Commission and our integrated advisory group, we continue to build and strengthen partnerships and alliances with the sector, consumers and stakeholders to support our goals of equity, integration and consumer co-design.
Two key partnerships that have been established to date include PHARMAC and Te Tihi Ruahine Whānau Ora Alliance.
The Pharmaceutical Management Agency, better known as PHARMAC, is a New Zealand Crown entity that, on behalf of district health boards, makes decisions regarding medicines, vaccines and medical devices for use in the community and public hospitals.
In July 2018, PHARMAC celebrated serving New Zealanders for a quarter of a century. In their Statement of Intent for 2017/18 to 2020/21, PHARMAC launched three ambitious goals to be achieved by 2025. One of these was to eliminate inequities in access to medicines, with a particular focus on ensuring Māori, under the obligations of Te Tiriti o Waitangi, gain more equitable access to funded medicines.
The Commission and PHARMAC have teamed up to support three projects with a medicines access equity focus. PHARMAC provides additional support to these projects in the form of quality improvement expertise and support, working with the Commission’s project team towards improved health outcomes and a focus on equity.
Learn more about PHARMAC’s bold goals on their website.
Te Tihi Ruahine Whānau Ora Alliance
Te Tihi o Ruahine Whānau Ora Alliance Charitable Trust represents an alliance of nine iwi, hapū, and Māori organisations that work collectively to deliver whanau-centred services for Māori health based upon the Te Ara Whānau Ora process.
Te ao Māori models of health are used by, and often underpin the entire operation, of iwi and Māori providers. Models such as these provide a means of understanding health through the eyes of Māori. Quality improvement models, albeit in a form that is different to models stemming from Western society, are also present in Māori models.
Whānau ora is a culturally grounded holistic approach to wellbeing that focuses on the moemoeā (aspirations) of whānau and the strengths that exist within whānau rather than any deficits. Whānau take the lead and are supported along their journey. It is underpinned by the actualisation of whānau potential through building whānau strengths and capabilities. Over time, whānau ora has moved from a long-term Māori health outcome to a model of care, a philosophy and a national policy.
The concept of whānau ora resonates strongly with the health and disability sector. The seven whānau ora outcome areas identified by the Taskforce for Whānau-Centred initiatives align nicely to the Statistics New Zealand wellbeing indicators released in 2019. The evolution of whānau ora continues and is supported as a tool to facilitate a whole-of-system approach by some agencies.
Te Tihi, working alongside the Commission on the Whakakotahi programme, has supported the Commission’s understanding of the tikanga Māori, Māori worldview in terms of health and quality improvement and how we can come together and gain a stronger understanding of each other’s worldview. This has included active support both for our internal team, and projects participating in Whakakotahi, primarily those with a Māori health care focus.