The changes being made to our health system include a new national approach to improve how healthcare is delivered in communities. This is called a locality - a place-based approach to improving the health of populations, as well as a mechanism for organising health and social services to meet the needs identified by whānau, community and mana whenua.
Behind the scenes, a locality is a model that is being used to connect health care, support services, Iwi and community organisations within a particular area in New Zealand.
Eventually, every area in New Zealand will have its own locality.
The locality model is built on the understanding that a whole range of different things can impact a person’s wellbeing. It focuses on avoiding people getting sick and helping whānau stay well, giving iwi and communities a strong voice in deciding what’s needed in their local area, and getting different health and wellbeing organisations working together better to improve people’s experiences of healthcare.
This will replace the way things were done through District Health Boards and Primary Healthcare Organisations. The same people are doing this work now, but the way they will do the work is changing.
Iwi and the local community will determine their own geographic area that will become the ‘locality’. The areas will be small enough to still have a local feel for the people that live there. Everyone in Aotearoa will fit into a locality that reflects their community.
This new way of delivering healthcare closer to people’s homes is already being developed. Nine areas around the country are being trialled.
It is the work that happens within the locality that will make a difference to people’s health and wellbeing:
Things will be different for people once a locality is up and running:
For more information on localities and the first areas that will roll out the locality approach, read this fact sheet: Localities Update for the Health Sector - April 2022 [PDF, 1.2 MB].