15 Dec 2009

High Maori population cited as reason for stroke rate

6:45 am on 15 December 2009

The high Maori population of Northland is being cited as a reason the region has twice the rate of strokes as the national average.

Stroke Foundation regional manager Rex Paddy says up to 40% of adults have high blood pressure.

He told Waatea News the number of Maori having strokes is going up while the incidence among Pakeha has dropped, with living conditions and poverty being factors.

Mr Paddy said strokes are thinning the ranks of kaumatua and putting pressure on whanau, hapu and wider iwi groups.