Maori dying too young

Coast Maori health in a perilous state.

Coast Maori health in a perilous state.

GRIM REPORT: Ngati Porou Hauora chairman Teepa Wawatai is determined to change the “unacceptable” state of health of Maori living on the East Coast, as revealed by a Ngati Porou Hauora-commissioned report into health standards from Kaiti to Hicks Bay. Picture suplied

MAORI living on the East Coast have a “perilous state of health”, according to a report commissioned and released by Ngati Porou Hauora (NPH).

The report is described as “revealing startling information” about the health of the population within the NPH rohe.

Titled the Ngati Porou Hauora Health Dashboard, it reports on the state of health for those living between Hicks Bay in the north and Kaiti in Gisborne.

“This is sad because these are my people, our whanau,” said NPH chairman Teepa Wawatai.

“What the report says is that we are a high needs, rural population, who die younger than any other population group in New Zealand and suffer more through co-morbidity factors on the way to that early death.

“That is unacceptable and it is an indictment on health policy and funding, particularly in areas of high need.

“The data says that this is the highest need area in the country, with the worst health outcomes.”

The Dashboard report shows the Ngati Porou rohe has the highest level of premature mortality in New Zealand — 66 percent above the national level and 17 percent above the rest of Tairawhiti.

Amenable or preventable mortality rates

Amenable or preventable mortality rates in the Ngati Porou rohe are more than two times (129 percent higher) the national rate, about 48 percent higher than Tairawhiti, and it has the highest rate of amenable death in the country. The rate for Maori is about 37 percent higher than the national rate and 15 percent higher than that of Tairawhiti.

Overall mortality rate is the probability of dying across all ages, based on national mortality data which collects numbers of deaths by place, time and cause.

The overall Maori mortality rate is 12 percent above the national Maori rate and 18 percent lower than Tairawhiti. This comparison needs to take into account the difference in the Maori density in Ngati Porou rohe (70 percent Maori in NPH compared with 45 percent in Tairawhiti and 14 percent in New Zealand), as well as the relative deprivation (91 percent NPH compared with 52 percent in Tairawhiti and 20 percent in New Zealand).

The report also shows 91 percent of Ngati Porou rohe population live in deprived areas (New Zealand Deprivation deciles 9 and 10) compared with 52 percent of Hauora Tairawhiti and 20 percent of New Zealand.

The report was released last week to a gathering of Ngati Porou pakeke (elders) from across the rohe.

It looks into statistics around the different causes of bad health except obesity although the report says several clinicians and management expressed the need for a measure that focuses on the epidemic of obesity across the population in the Ngati Porou rohe.

Data availability

“This will depend on complete and reliable data availability across practices where BMI or height/weight are recorded. Obesity measurement that is both specific and measurable has the potential to drive discussion about trends and action for addressing variation in healthy weight or obesity with people enrolled in NPH PHO,” the report says.

The Ministry of Health-sponsored report was researched and written by Lee Tan, who has been in the planning and funding team at Capital & Coast District Health for over 10 years.

Mr Wawatai said the report was unique.

“We have separated the information pertaining to those living on the East Coast from those living in the rest of the Tairawhiti district covered by the health board. The results were not surprising but alarming nevertheless.”

The large gathering of pakeke (elders) were saddened by the parlous state of health revealed in the report.

They were, however, appreciative of the discussion on the way forward for Ngati Porou including viewing concept drawings for a potential new facility at Te Puia Springs.

There was also discussion on a Ngati Porou-led approach to designing and delivering new models and ways to support whanau to live longer and better.

The general view of the pakeke group was that change was needed in the way forward, said Mr Wawatai.

MAORI living on the East Coast have a “perilous state of health”, according to a report commissioned and released by Ngati Porou Hauora (NPH).

The report is described as “revealing startling information” about the health of the population within the NPH rohe.

Titled the Ngati Porou Hauora Health Dashboard, it reports on the state of health for those living between Hicks Bay in the north and Kaiti in Gisborne.

“This is sad because these are my people, our whanau,” said NPH chairman Teepa Wawatai.

“What the report says is that we are a high needs, rural population, who die younger than any other population group in New Zealand and suffer more through co-morbidity factors on the way to that early death.

“That is unacceptable and it is an indictment on health policy and funding, particularly in areas of high need.

“The data says that this is the highest need area in the country, with the worst health outcomes.”

The Dashboard report shows the Ngati Porou rohe has the highest level of premature mortality in New Zealand — 66 percent above the national level and 17 percent above the rest of Tairawhiti.

Amenable or preventable mortality rates

Amenable or preventable mortality rates in the Ngati Porou rohe are more than two times (129 percent higher) the national rate, about 48 percent higher than Tairawhiti, and it has the highest rate of amenable death in the country. The rate for Maori is about 37 percent higher than the national rate and 15 percent higher than that of Tairawhiti.

Overall mortality rate is the probability of dying across all ages, based on national mortality data which collects numbers of deaths by place, time and cause.

The overall Maori mortality rate is 12 percent above the national Maori rate and 18 percent lower than Tairawhiti. This comparison needs to take into account the difference in the Maori density in Ngati Porou rohe (70 percent Maori in NPH compared with 45 percent in Tairawhiti and 14 percent in New Zealand), as well as the relative deprivation (91 percent NPH compared with 52 percent in Tairawhiti and 20 percent in New Zealand).

The report also shows 91 percent of Ngati Porou rohe population live in deprived areas (New Zealand Deprivation deciles 9 and 10) compared with 52 percent of Hauora Tairawhiti and 20 percent of New Zealand.

The report was released last week to a gathering of Ngati Porou pakeke (elders) from across the rohe.

It looks into statistics around the different causes of bad health except obesity although the report says several clinicians and management expressed the need for a measure that focuses on the epidemic of obesity across the population in the Ngati Porou rohe.

Data availability

“This will depend on complete and reliable data availability across practices where BMI or height/weight are recorded. Obesity measurement that is both specific and measurable has the potential to drive discussion about trends and action for addressing variation in healthy weight or obesity with people enrolled in NPH PHO,” the report says.

The Ministry of Health-sponsored report was researched and written by Lee Tan, who has been in the planning and funding team at Capital & Coast District Health for over 10 years.

Mr Wawatai said the report was unique.

“We have separated the information pertaining to those living on the East Coast from those living in the rest of the Tairawhiti district covered by the health board. The results were not surprising but alarming nevertheless.”

The large gathering of pakeke (elders) were saddened by the parlous state of health revealed in the report.

They were, however, appreciative of the discussion on the way forward for Ngati Porou including viewing concept drawings for a potential new facility at Te Puia Springs.

There was also discussion on a Ngati Porou-led approach to designing and delivering new models and ways to support whanau to live longer and better.

The general view of the pakeke group was that change was needed in the way forward, said Mr Wawatai.

Your email address will not be published. Comments will display after being approved by a staff member. Comments may be edited for clarity.

Poll

  • Voting please wait...
    Your vote has been cast. Reloading page...
    Did Winston Peters and New Zealand First make the right decision?