Our health system needs to do more to ensure our disabled community have access to consistent, high-quality services that enable them to achieve better, more equitable health outcomes.

What’s changing? / He aha ngā panonitanga?

The shift to a single nationwide health system managed by Health New Zealand (Health NZ) and delivered locally will improve the quality and consistency of care for disabled people.

A national coordinated network of healthcare professionals and providers will help ensure best practice care is available to all disabled communities, and that care does not vary depending on where you live.

The Disability Strategy will remain a cornerstone of our health system, and will direct the Ministry of Health, Māori Health Authority and Health NZ in delivering improved health outcomes for disabled people.

What will it look like in future? / Ka pēhea ā raurangi?

A wider range of primary and community care services will be available across New Zealand, developed to be more inclusive of disabled people.

A stronger consumer voice in the design of local, community services and planning will give disabled people greater opportunities to help shape a system that better meets their needs and help them stay well in the community.

The networking and integration of primary and community services will also make care more coordinated, minimising repetition, and ensuring carers have a better understanding of users’ needs.

Health NZ will create ways to advocate nationally to ensure best practice and service design reflect the diverse interests and needs of disabled people across the system.

When more specialised care is needed, disabled people will have access to high quality hospital and specialist care no matter where they live in New Zealand or which part of the system they need to access.

What’s next? / He aha e whai ake nei?

The Minister for Disability Issues Carmel Sepuloni and Minister of Health have requested separate advice on the transformation and governance of disability support services and where it sits in wider government structures. This advice is due in September/October 2021.

Over the rest of 2021 there will be opportunities to influence the details of how our future health system will work, including how we can ensure that Health NZ acts to continuously improve the quality and consistency of outcomes for disabled people.

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