Rural primary health care in New Zealand is delivered predominantly by medical practitioners in private general practices. Other providers include public health organisations, trusts, and groups working together with their communities.
Rural general practices range from sole practitioner practices to larger practices sometimes with up to six or seven General Practitioners. Along with General Practitioners, the practice team includes rural nurse specialists, Nurse Practitioners, receptionists, and allied health workers.
There are about 200 rural general (family) practices in New Zealand. They can be found in small towns close to major rural or urban centres or in remote settlements located in the most beautiful places in New Zealand, with mountains, beaches, lakes, or rivers at the doorstep.
Increasing access, achieving equity and improving health outcomes for Māori is a key priority for Hauora Taiwhenua, Health NZ and the Māori Health Authority.
There are about 240 Māori health providers in New Zealand. They tend to deliver services to predominantly – but not exclusively – Māori communities. In addition, there are a number of providers of health and disability services to Māori.
Māori health models are built on four cornerstones: whānau (family health), tinana (physical health), hinengaro (mental health) and wairua (spiritual health). Traditional healing includes mirimiri (massage), rongoa (herbal treatments) and karakia (spiritual prayer). Traditional healers incorporate the spiritual dimension in assessment and therapy and do so in a culturally relevant way.
For many Māori, the major deficiency in modern health services is taha wairua (spiritual dimension). This failure of Pakeha (Non-Māori) health providers to appreciate Māori cultural perceptions of health, in combination with socio-economic conditions and genetics, has meant statistics on Māori health care compare very poorly with those of non-Māori (Pakeha).
Working together with iwi, hapu, whānau and Māori communities to develop better outcomes for Māori health gain and appropriate health and disability services.
Involving Māori at all levels of the sector, in decision-making, planning, development and delivery of health and disability services.
Working to ensure Māori have at least the same level of health as non-Māori, safeguarding Māori cultural concepts, values and practices.
There are many reasons to work as a GP in a rural practice in New Zealand including the opportunity to deliver health care to small tight-knit communities, and the range of varied and interesting clinical work. The rural lifestyle and slower pace of life is also appealing to many, as is the opportunity to take a break from the stresses of managing a practice. Working as a rural locum is a wonderful way of discovering remote and beautiful parts of New Zealand. If you are looking for a permanent position, you can match where you work with your lifestyle interests.
Nurse Practitioners are a vital part of the rural health workforce in New Zealand. Many nurse practitioners work in primary care where they may be the lead health care provider for their communities. This is common in rural areas particularly where it is hard to source a GP. Some nurse practitioners also own their own practices. Nurse practitioners are highly valued in rural and underserved areas where they are often the only health provider available.
If you are an internationally qualified nurse, registered nurses or Nurse Practitioner from the US, Canada and the UK, you can register as a registered nurse with the Nursing Council of New Zealand. To become a Nurse Practitioner, you must then apply and meet the criteria required for registration in the NP scope of practice.
We have vacancies throughout New Zealand just waiting to be filled by you. From Kaitaia at the top of the North Island to Invercargill at the bottom of the South Island and everywhere in between, we can find a role in your desired location.
PO Box 547
Level 2, 88 The Terrace
Wellington Central, Wellington 6011