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Thursday / June 13.
HomeminewsMemorandum of Understanding to Benefit Māori Eye Health

Memorandum of Understanding to Benefit Māori Eye Health

Representatives from The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Ophthalmologists (RANZCO) and Kāpo Māori Aotearoa New Zealand Inc. (KMA), a national Indigenous-led society, have come together to sign the Tatou Pounamu Memorandum of Understanding (MOU).

The agreement will see RANZCO deliver appropriate resourcing, advice, and information to KMA members, while KMA will provide advice on engaging and establishing meaningful relationships with Māori networks, and guidance on cultural safety issues.

This agreement puts pen to paper in acknowledging our shared goal, and how we can work collaboratively to achieve this

As well as this, a working group with equal representation with be established to develop, implement, monitor, and evaluate an action plan.

Chrissie Cowan, KMA Chief Executive, says the commitment made by signing the Tatou Pounamu MOU is a positive step in the right direction to ensuring a bright future for Māori eye health in Aotearoa New Zealand.

“We’re excited to work in partnership with RANZCO to develop a Māori-centred approach that improves Māori eye health and wellbeing outcomes in Aotearoa,” said Ms Cowan.

“We acknowledge the expertise that RANZCO brings and their commitment to building a relationship that is informed, guided by and practices Māori principles and values, including rangatiratanga (self-determination), kaitiakitanga (protection and guardianship) and manaakitanga (respect and generosity).”

RANZCO Director and Chair of the Māori and Pasifika Health Committee, Dr Justin Mora, is also hopeful about what the partnership signifies.

“Our shared kaupapa (purpose) of striving for equity, while supporting Māori to attain self-determination with their health, puts us in a really strong position to move forward and achieve better outcomes,” said Dr Mora.

“Delivering a culturally safe experience throughout the entire pathway is also of the utmost importance to us, and we’re confident that in working together with the Kāpo Māori Aotearoa team, we will be able to improve in this area.

“We have a real opportunity here to improve the eye health for everyone in Aotearoa New Zealand. This agreement puts pen to paper in acknowledging our shared goal, and how we can work collaboratively to achieve this,” he said.

The Tatou Pounamu MOU is valid for three years, effective immediately (15 July 2022).