New Zealand is calling on the World Health Organization (WHO) and governments to prioritise health improvements for indigenous people worldwide. Health professionals say poor data and resources for cancer diagnosis and treatment for indigenous communities is impacting on survival rates.
Research conducted by the University of Otago shows poorer Māori cancer survival rates to non-Māori. A situation that's also reflected around the world.
Bridget Robson, Associate Dean Māori at the University of Otago, says, "If we want a Tino Rangatiratanga approach across all nations, indigenous peoples have to have their own data to find out what's going on for them and what the Government's are doing to support them or not."
Over 150 cancer experts and indigenous health experts across the Tasman and the Pacific have now published an open letter calling on the WHO and governments to take heed of the issue.
Author: Moana Makapelu Lee