A Waikato health service is now working with a Maori health provider in an effort to engage more effectively with their patients and encourage them to keep appointments.
Ngaruawahia-based Allied Health has reduced the no-show numbers and gained a better uptake of appointments by Maori families by linking with Waikato's Raukura Hauora O Tainui.
The Hauora employs a disability support team, a chronic disease management nurse and community health workers.
Allied Health physiotherapist Shelley McConnel says she used to have a big file of referrals for people she never saw as they weren't comfortable about taking advice from someone they didn't know.
She says the Raukura team help District Health Board staff link up with clients who are reluctant, shy or difficult to contact.
Ms McConnel says the Raukura team know how to interact with Maori clients, and carry out follow-ups visits to make sure patients are comfortable about making appointments.