GPNZ Political Panel

GPNZ Political Panel

GPNZ Primary care political panel 2023

In the lead up to New Zealand’s general election GPNZ was pleased to host a thought-provoking political panel event online, giving the primary care workforce an opportunity to hear from health spokespeople on the issues top of mind for them.

The panel brought together Labour, National, Te Pāti Māori, Greens and Act for 90 minutes devoted to what each party plans to bring to the table specifically for primary care.

Held online on 23 August, the panel saw the five main political parties in New Zealand go toe to toe on issues such as workforce recruitment and retention, nurse pay parity, general practice funding, the current health reforms including the future of Te Aka Whai Ora and localities, Te Whatu Ora wait lists, planned care, and more.

With questions driven from the audience and pitched to the panel by Radio New Zealand health journalist Ruth Hill, it was a real chance to discuss the challenges and opportunities facing the primary health care sector today.

“We are thrilled with the turnout and the quality of discussions that took place during the event,” says GPNZ chair Dr Bryan Betty.

“Our goal was to create a platform where our primary care workforce could come along and have a listen to each parties perspectives.

“Primary health is such an important and pressing issue in our country right now, it is the backbone of our system and it needs focus along with a consistent approach that will take us past the issues we are seeing at the moment – increasing demand and complexity coupled with issues around equity, outcomes and access.”

The evening delivered encouraging korero for the sector, with feedback that primary and community care will be given the space and support needed going forwards to have a healthy health and care system going forwards.

“I’m really, really encouraged that we are talking in this way, and parties are thinking in this way and hope that extends through to the next term of parliament,” says Dr Betty.

Our sincere thanks go to all our panel members who made the night possible:

  • Dr Anae Neru Leavasa, Labour
  • Dr Shane Reti, National
  • Lance Norman, Te Pāti Māori
  • Ricardo Menéndez March, The Greens
  • Brooke van Velden, ACT

Special thanks also to Ruth Hill for her work as MC and to Irihāpeti Mahuika for the opening and closing karakia. Irihāpeti is a member of the GPNZ Executive Committee, co-chair Ngā Matapihi o te Wairua and Director of Hauora Māori and Equity at Pegasus Health.

The video from the event is now available below.

Video: GPNZ Political Panel