To celebrate the historic “first-ever” appointment of a Pacific leader to a DHB in New Zealand’s health sector, a fono was held at CMDHB on 18 October. Termed “Mark the Occasion”, the celebration was for the appointment of Fepulea’i Margie Apa as CEO of CMDHB, together with the appointment of Vui Mark Gosche as CMDHB Chair.
Facilitated by Wayne Williams, CEO of Alliance Health Plus, supported by Board members of CMDHB and Alliance Health Plus and senior staff from each organisation, the session was an opportunity for communication of key messages from CMDHB’s new CEO and for representatives of Pacific Clinics and Providers to ask questions regarding their burning issues, including clarification of CMDHB’s direction.
Some of the key messages from Fepulea’i Margie Apa were; “continuing conversations with colleagues and listening for how CMDHB could keep improving, targeting of community needs and recognition that there was not one answer but the best collection of ideas. Also, an undertaking to ongoing workforce development (“growing our own”) and leveraging the considerable CMDHB resources for this purpose”.
Generic themes from Pacific Clinics and Providers included; “concerns for the social-connectedness of Pacific elderly if funding was cut, the need for the recognition of social determinants and intersectoral funding, for courage around programme design, as well as flexible-funding for whole families and the need for workforce development”.
All parties are committed to positive change and actions to increase equity of outcomes for Pacific families and communities.