Māori focus for antenatal classes urged

8:51 am on 7 October 2015

District health boards should to re-think the way they run antenatal classes to attract more Māori, the head of a Māori health service in Hawkes' Bay says.

Jean Te Huia, who has been a midwife for 20 years, runs Choices: Kahungunu Health Services, which specialises in Māori and Pasifika women and children.

She said District Health Boards were funded to provide antenatal education but the way classes were currently run and instructed did not connect with young Māori women.

Ms Te Huia said that was why a high number of Maori did not attend antenatal education.

She said antenatal services should be provided in an environment that met the cultural needs of the group, such as a marae.