08 March 2013

The New Zealand Medical Association (NZMA) welcomes the Government’s announcement of a community programme designed to reduce the number of people from the Porirua community being admitted to Wellington Hospital with preventable conditions.

“We are pleased the focus of the programme will be on addressing the negative impact of social factors such as poor quality, damp housing, employment conditions, and economic status that lead to illnesses, low quality of life and mortality,” says NZMA Chair Dr Paul Ockelford. “We agree with Health Minister Ryall’s statement that improved living conditions and earlier interventions could help people avoid going to hospital.”

Porirua is one of 10 communities recently chosen to be a part of the social sector trials that bring local and central government agencies together with community representatives, Iwi, and social service provider to test new ways of delivering better social and health services to New Zealanders.

It is the first of the trials that focuses on health issues across all age groups. Most of the other social sector trials focus on educational outcomes.

“We look forward to seeing the involvement of local health professionals – particularly GPs – as part of the trial’s Advisory Group,” says Dr Ockelford.