10 Jul 2014

Families rack up debt to care for dying

8:28 pm on 10 July 2014

New research shows that some whanau are accruing debt so they can care for dying relatives.

The study of 11 families looked at the financial cost for whanau looking after someone who was dying and was presented at the Health Research Council Maori hui in Auckland on Thursday.

The research includes both Maori and Pakeha families but researcher Dr Tess Moeke-Maxwell, of Ngai Tai ki Tamaki descent, focussed on the impact on whanau Maori.

Dr Moeke-Maxwell said the findings showed families would go to extreme and costly lengths to care for whanau, including accruing debt through credit cards, other debit cards, overdrafts and borrowing money.

The study would be published later this year, and researchers hoped to carry out a similar, larger, body of work on the kaupapa.