Groundbreaking Māori Health Authority board named

By Mare Haimona-Riki

An eight-person board has been unveiled by the government to spearhead the new Māori Health Authority, tasked with turning around negative health outcomes and inequities for Māori.

District health board leaders Sharon Shea and Tipa Mahuta have been named co-chairs, Lady Tureiti Moxon of Whānau Ora provider Te Kohāo Health, Te Rōpū Whakakaupapa Urutā member Dr Sue Crengle, Awerangi Tamihere, Dr Mataroria Lydon, Fiona Pimm and Dr Chris Tooley. 

Māori Health Minister Peeni Henare says the steering group provided by Sir Mason Durie was instrumental in leading the recruitment of these people.

“I am confident that we have amassed a huge amount of skill, talent and leadership to be able to take the Māori Health Authority into the future.”

“I am warmed by the words of both Sharon Shea and Tipa Mahuta this morning, who said that their number one goal is to put whānau at the centre of all that the Māori health authority does.”

Henare says the authority should be fully functional by July 2022.

“Of course we are not expecting it to be going a thousand miles per hour, but we are setting the foundation so that by July, the people’s confidence in these groups can take us beyond and into the future.

"There's a big job in front of us but if we don't put a pole in the ground in terms of that goal for July 1, then we'll just be walking around aimlessly," Henare says.