10 Apr 2020

Pacific health receive funding to support Covid-19 strategies

4:02 pm on 10 April 2020

A spokesperson for New Zealand's Covid-19 Pacific Response Team says a huge increase in non-clinical providers will be necessary to deliver ongoing healthcare to the community.

The government on Tuesday announced a $US10-million support package to help address risks to Pasifika communities amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Api Talemaitoga, who is also a South Auckland GP, said along with ensuring Covid-19 safety messages are communicated in the languages of the Pacific, stopping unnecessary physical appointments is also key.

Dr Talemaitoga said moving consultations online is part of the strategy.

But he said many more non-clinical workers will be needed to provide homecare to the aged and at-risk.

"Rather than working with a group of 30 to 35, you're going individually to people's houses making sure our workers are protected with PPE equipment so they are not exposing themselves and spreading the virus to the people they care for."

Dr Talemaitoga said ensuring health workers had appropriate cultural fluency is another issue.