Make health equity the norm
The RACP recognises health as multidimensional, encompassing more than just the treatment of illness and disease.
Health equity can be promoted through strategies such as Health in All Policies, which considers the wider determinants of health such as housing and living environments, working conditions, and social environments in which people grow, develop and age. New Zealand has made a commitment to the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), a set of targets designed to shape a global response to ending poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. The SDGs include a call to ensure healthy lives and promote wellbeing for all at all ages. Actions to address the social determinants of health at the micro, meso and macro-levels will make a real difference to New Zealand achieving equity for people, their whānau and their communities.
Where people live, how they spend their time, and who they live with and support shapes people’s health. Health equity is achieved when the conditions in which people grow, live, work and age support health and wellbeing. Systems, structures, policies and programmes may be organised and designed to enable health and wellbeing, but this is only possible when people do not experience barriers to access which in turn are the result of compounded systemic injustice which is, simply put, unfair. The evidence overwhelmingly supports action on the social determinants of health through a whole-of-society response: central and local government, communities, non-government organisations and industry can work together to support health and wellbeing for all members of our society.
View our Make Health Equity the Norm campaign
The RACP’s Māori Health Hui is a biennial project of the Māori Health Committee, a standing Committee of the NZ Committee. The third and most recent Hui was held in Auckland at te Manukanuka o Hoturoa Marae in Mangere on 9 November 2017. It was attended by Māori RACP members, RACP Board and members of the Senior Leadership Group, as well as representatives from health sector organisations, and Māori members of other medical colleges. The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Committee (ATSIHC) was represented at the Hui by Dr Naru Pal.
The report opens with an overview of Te Tiriti o Waitangi/The Treaty of Waitangi, before considering the location and place of the Hui – Te Manukanuka o Hoturoa marae in Mangere. Our Hui consisted of three sessions, which are captured in this report: Ko Aotearoa Tēnei: Resetting the Foundations of the Institution; WAI 2575 Inquiry into Health Services and Outcomes for Māori; and a Mana Taurite/Health Equity panel, featuring representatives from a diverse range of organisations, all with a common aim of achieving health equity for Māori.
This report acts as the record of our Hui, and seeks to capture and preserve as much of the valuable discussions, questions and challenges to the RACP for a wider audience as possible.
Read the Hui Report
Physicians and paediatricians practising in isolation in New Zealand discussion document
Physicians and paediatricians want to ensure the best health outcomes for their patients. Health practitioners work within an integrated team and health system, and can only deliver quality care if they are well supported in their workplace. Many specialist physicians and paediatricians practice in geographical or professional isolation.
This document outlines some of the issues facing those physicians and paediatricians practising in isolation and seeks to identify ways to ameliorate the situation.
Read the Physicians and paediatricians practising in isolation in New Zealand discussion
Call for a New Zealand Rehabilitation Strategy
The Call for a New Zealand Rehabilitation Strategy (the Call) recognises the unique New Zealand rehabilitation landscape and current provisions while identifying opportunities for strengthening, and increasing collaboration when providing, rehabilitation services.
The Call presents the rationale for a New Zealand rehabilitation strategy as a tool to ensure equitable access to rehabilitation services and improve outcomes for patients and their whānau/families.
The Call was jointly developed by the Australasian Faculty of Rehabilitation Medicine and the New Zealand Rehabilitation Association with a Working Party and in consultation with key stakeholders and organisations working in the rehabilitation space.
Read the Call for a New Zealand Rehabilitation Strategy
Antimicrobial resistance in New Zealand
This New Zealand position paper outlines the international context of antimicrobial resistance (AMR), identifies three examples of multiple drug resistant organisms (MDRO) common in New Zealand and examines ways in which health professionals can contribute to local actions to combat antimicrobial resistance through antimicrobial stewardship (AMS) and enhanced infection prevention and control activities.
It has been developed by the NZ Adult Medicine Division Committee (NZ AMDC) and NZ Policy & Advocacy Committee (NZ PAC), and peer reviewed by Associate Professor of Molecular Medicine and Pathology at the University of Auckland, Mark Thomas.
The RACP believes a national, evidence-based approach coordinated by central government and involving Ministries, District Health Boards (DHBs) hospitals and primary care, the private sector and the public is vital to contribute to the global effort to combat AMR.
Read the Antimicrobial resistance in New Zealand paper
Starting the conversation about organ donation: a resource for physicians and paediatricians in New Zealand
Rates of organ and tissue donation after death in New Zealand have been described as ‘low’, by comparison with other countries. In 2015, the Ministry of Health began a review into organ and tissue donation in New Zealand. The review identified local initiatives to increase deceased organ donation and transplantation in New Zealand; considers features of overseas models, and notes New Zealand-specific issues that may impact on decisions to donate.
Following that review, in June 2017 the New Zealand government launched The Deceased Organ Donation and Transplantation National Strategy.
Read the Starting the conversation about organ donation: a resource for physicians and paediatricians in New Zealand