Christchurch Consensus Statement for Improved Rural Health


Hauora Taiwhenua Rural Health Network Announces Christchurch Consensus

Hauora Taiwhenua Rural Health Network is today releasing the Christchurch Consensus – Achieving healthy and thriving rural communities in Aotearoa New Zealand.

The Christchurch Consensus has been developed with the input and feedback of Hauora Taiwhenua members who attended the National Rural Health Conference 2022 in Christchurch.

The Christchurch Consensus represents the combined advice of New Zealand’s rural healthcare providers about how the Government’s Health Reforms can alleviate poor health outcomes in rural communities.

It details priorities and calls to action that target the rural workforce crisis, unacceptably poor health outcomes for rural Māori, rurally focussed locality planning, and access to and funding of services that are set up specifically for rural areas.

While the Christchurch Consensus aligns well with the high level intent of the recently released Te Pae Tata Interim Health Plan, it provides details and the rural lens necessary to effect a vital turnaround in rural health outcomes.

Hauora Taiwhenua Chief Executive, Dr Grant Davidson PhD, describes the Christchurch Consensus as “a clear and direct presentation on where and how the health system is failing rural communities and steps we can take towards resolving it.”

Dr Davidson also stresses the collective and expert nature of the Consensus, “These are the concerns of rural health practitioners, and the solutions offered in it come from their experience and the realities they deal with every day.”

Says Dr Davidson, “We want to see Manatū Hauora embed the Christchurch Consensus into Government’s first Rural Health Strategy so that together, we can make genuine inroads to improving the health and wellbeing of rural Aotearoa New Zealand.”