Sunday, November 28

Buses, a ‘self-determined’ vaccination initiative for the socially excluded: Maori health advocates


Maori health leaders in Auckland say today’s deployment of buses and mobile clinics is part of a long-delayed vaccination outreach program tailored to the needs of their communities.

Dr. Matire Harwood

Papakura GP Matire Harwood says it is unacceptable that her community suffered from the inequities of a vaccine delivery system that did not take their needs into account.
Photo: supplied

The new vaccination buses receive a blessing before being sent to Auckland communities.

Photo: RNZ / Mariner Fagaiva-Muller

The first in a series of vaccination buses aimed at increasing the number of Covid injections in South Auckland is already on its way.

The buses, organized by the district health boards of the region, will act as emergent mobile vehicles with the vaccines administered from the conditioned vehicles to allow adequate social distancing.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern wants to see 80 percent of eligible Aucklanders with at least one dose by Monday.

Henderson and Papakura are among the areas that will receive a visit.

The Waipareira Trust said the buses and mobile vaccination clinics are part of a program designed to vaccinate Auckland’s Maori and Pasifika, many of whom were working poor and unemployed poorly served by the health system.

Trust CEO John Tamihere said that otherwise those people would fall under the cracks of a program designed for New Zealand’s middle class and designed by people who had little information about the social barriers of other classes. social.

“You have to understand that most of our people are unemployed. They are priorities, they are not middle class priorities of vaccines at all costs. They are priorities to try to put one foot in front of the other at $ 28,000 or less. A year,” said.

“Then we have another part of our people who are the working poor, less than $ 50,000, so we have to design programs that reach these cohorts of people, because all the programs are designed for white, middle-class New Zealanders.

“We just have to step back and allow ourselves to get into the game of designing these things.”

He said those initiatives had arrived six months late.

Papakura GP Matire Harwood said that it was right for the Maori and Pasifika communities to lead their own vaccination campaigns and that it had been unacceptable that those communities had suffered from inequity in health services in terms of vaccination levels.

“That has been part of the problem, that ability of our DHB and the health system to hand over the power and the funds so that we can find self-determined solutions, things that are really going to work for us,” she said.

“The solutions have been led by people who do not know our text, who do not know our whānau, who do not understand some of the reasons why they cannot go for vaccines.

“We had to come up with it ourselves and not just fight for our whānau, but fight the system to be able to do it right with the evidence-based treatments we are entitled to. This saves lives.”

Dr. Matire Harwood

Papakura GP Matire Harwood says it is unacceptable that her community suffered from the inequities of a vaccine delivery system that did not take their needs into account.
Photo: supplied

Tony Kake of Papakura Marae said the mobile outreach initiative increased capacity and offered options for local communities.

“I think it’s about opening up more options for our whanau. If that means we can get a bus and more access opportunities, all the better.”

John Tamihere at the new Covid-19 vaccination clinic in Te Whānau O Waipareira.

John Tamihere says the implementation program was designed by middle-class health officials with little information about the social barriers in their community and others.
Photo: Twitter / Te Whānau O Waipareira

The buses operated by the Waipareira Trust would include loudspeakers to play music and alert people to the presence of vaccinators, which would target both “the willing and the undecided.”

Earlier, Deputy Minister of Health Aupito William Sio said Morning report In particular, areas with low vaccination rates had been identified by DHBs and that buses would be concentrated in these neighborhoods.

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Associate Minister of Health Aupito William emphasized that the bus initiative will continue for months.
Photo: RNZ / Samuel Rillstone

Maori and Pasifika health providers would partner to run some of the bus operations, which had already led to innovative ways to reach communities.

“One of the Pacific providers, South Seas Healthcare … next Monday they are looking to partner with E tū and New Zealand Post in East Tāmaki and they are looking for around 1000 workers there,” Sio said.

“The bus will arrive and the workers and their families can present themselves. At level 4 and level 3 the vaccination will be done outside.”

There will be three buses on the road this morning and three this afternoon, he added.

Door knocks on the streets may take place today, while adhering to alert level 4 for social distancing and other health restrictions, but the initiative would last for months, Sio said.

“Obviously, this is going to be around for some time to come. Our goal is to make sure that for the next four months we provide the opportunity for all eligible people to get vaccinated.”

High vaccination rates among Maori and Pacific peoples are critical – Doctor

Emergency medicine specialist John Bonning says that by the time lightning victims reach the hospital, either

John Bonning is part of a group of doctors who fight against misinformation.
Photo: RNZ / Kate Newton

A prominent medical specialist, Dr John Bonning, said that everything possible should be done to increase vaccination rates for Maori and Pasifika and that doctors are playing their part in providing assurance on vaccines.

Bonning, a Waikato emergency department physician, said Morning report A petition signed by 5,000 physicians supporting the vaccination program was aimed at emphasizing that vaccination was the best protection against Covid-19.

Doctors in particular wanted to target hesitation and address those confused or alarmed by misinformation on social media.

“We wanted to be a strong, positive voice answering people’s questions and giving assurance,” he said.

“It is the unvaccinated who are overwhelmingly harmed by this [disease]. They are four and a half times more likely to contract the disease, 10 times more likely to be hospitalized, 11 times more likely to die and that’s really worrying … So we really need to protect our vulnerable populations, our rural, regional, Maori and pasifika “.


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