9 Jul 2012

Labour seeks advice from Maori health providers

6:35 am on 9 July 2012

The Labour Party's Health spokesperson says a caucus hui in Northland this week, will give her the chance to talk to Maori health providers in the rohe about finding solutions to reducing primary healthcare costs.

Maryan Street says a new Otago University study which shows that Maori are less likely than Pakeha to put off going to the doctor and collect their prescriptions because of the cost, deserves closer consideration.

She says with prescription costs increasing, and more and more low income families unable to pay for their doctor's visits, primary health care is being put out of reach for whanau living in poverty, and dependants such as children and the elderly.

Ms Street says it's important to hear from Maori health providers working at grass roots level, about what needs to be done so that impoverished communities don't miss out.

She says listening to their ideas about ways primary health care could be better delivered, and how low cost services could be managed, will be part of her discussions.