Recognition of Te Tiriti o Waitangi

27 September 2023

ANZCA Council has approved the development of a comprehensive strategy to ensure that the college meets its responsibilities under Te Tiriti o Waitangi, Aotearoa/New Zealand’s founding document.

This is an essential step in meeting our legal obligations under the Pae Ora (Healthy Futures) Act 2022, and addressing the outcomes from the recent Waitangi Tribunal claim known as Wai2575, brought by Māori against the Crown for the continuing health outcome disparities for Māori contributed to by failures in the health sector. Key drivers for the (very recently introduced) health services reforms primarily focus on reducing inequity, and improving health for all, but especially hauora Māori (Māori health).
As a priority, ANZCA has already committed to fulfilling the recently introduced requirements of the Medical Council of New Zealand to ensure that the curriculum and CPD activities we provide deliver excellent, culturally safe care and workplaces. Key documents that underpin medical professionals’ obligations to Te Tiriti are listed on the Medical Council of New Zealand website. These also led to the development of a Cultural Safety Training Framework by the Council of Medical Colleges (CMC).
Increasing cultural safety (aspects of which apply to any disadvantaged cultures outside the majority culture) is less about learning the culture of others and more about understanding the world view clinicians bring to each patient and whānau (family) encounter.

It includes reflecting on the potential impact of clinicians’ personal beliefs; the historical and social context in which clinicians work; personal biases; the inherent power imbalance in the doctor- patient relationship; and developing the ability to take steps to mitigate any negative impacts. Improving cultural safety is also fundamental to the aims of and in Te Mauri o Rongo, the New Zealand Health Charter, and will also improve workplace relations and support our Māori trainees and fellows.
Planning is underway to undertake a two to three-year project to address these new requirements. It will be run out of the New Zealand office and will take a co-design approach based on the principles of Te Tiriti to the development of the strategy, ensuring that the Māori Anaesthetist Network Aotearoa (MANA) will be involved at every stage of the process from setting the vision and values to creating priority actions similar to those found in the RAP that will bring the strategy to life.

Last updated 14:37 27.09.2023