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A joint launch project between midwifery education providers and the Ministry of Health will start a new chapter to address inequalities.
Over the next four years, $6m pledged by the Ministry will be allocated to increase recruitment and retention of Māori and Pasifika undergraduate midwifery students.
9.83% of New Zealand’s midwifery workforce identify as Māori, while Pasifika accounts for only 2.75%.
Midwives President, Nicole Pihema, says obvious disparities mirror the inequalities found within midwives’ communities.
“Achieving more equitable health outcomes for our Māori and Pasifika communities starts with addressing the gaps in our workforce,” said Ms Pihema.
“I have every confidence that as our workforce shifts to more accurately reflect the communities we serve, the natural consequence of this will be increased wellbeing and improved perinatal outcomes for whānau nationwide.”
The contract will be held by AUT University; with the Ministry. A memorandum of understanding with four other midwifery educations will be included for Waikato’s Institute of Technology (Wintec), Victoria University, Ara Institute of Canterbury (Ara) and Otago Polytechnic.
Image: Google Maps/Auckland University of Technology
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