Nelson Marlborough Health’s He Huarahi Matepukupuku project is funded by the Ministry of Health and aims to improve the ‘cancer pathway’ for Maori people in Te Tau Ihu and Te Waipounamu.

The main goals of the project are to improve:

  • health professionals’ cultural competency 
  • the cultural appropriateness of health services 
  • health literacy within the Maori community by increasing awareness of cancer signs and symptoms and by increasing understanding of the cancer treatment pathways and processes.

The Cancer Korero booklet

The Cancer Korero booklet has been collated to help towards these goals – in particular the goal to improve health literacy and understanding of cancer treatment pathways.

“Through being well-informed about cancer we have a head start on knowing the truth. We can then be prepared to care for our own tinana, but also tautoko whānau or friends going through it.” – Lorraine Staunton, Maori Cancer Pathway Educator, Nelson Marlborough Health.  

The booklet is written with Maori people in mind and includes sections on:

  • cancer definitions and terminology
  • how to reduce your risk of cancer
  • bowel screening
  • community supports.

Download the booklet here.

Community Cancer Support brochure

The Community Cancer Support brochure brings details of the cancer services available in Nelson Tasman Marlborough together in one place.

The brochure includes information and contact details for:

  • Te Piki Oranga (Maori Health Services)
  • Cancer Society
  • Victory Community Centre
  • Nelson Marlborough Health services.

This information is also available here or you can download the brochure here.


Encouraging cultural competency

Northland GP and former New Zealander of the Year, Dr Lance O’Sullivan addressed over 500 people during a visit to the region earlier in the year. 

Dr O’Sullivan was invited to share his knowledge and views with health professionals as part of Nelson Marlborough Health's He Huarahi Matepukupuku  (Cancer Pathways for Maori) project.

One of the goals of the project is to improve cultural competency for health professionals within Te Tau Ihu (the top of the South Island), and to improve the cultural appropriateness of healthcare services.

Dr O'Sullivan's presentation touched on many aspects of cultural competency. One participant commented that they hadn't thought about 'clinical vs cultural competency' and that 'that line can be very difficult to differentiate if you are not made aware of it.'

Other participants expressed their appreciation of Dr O'Sullivan's thinking beyond traditional methods of healthcare delivery, his solution-focused, practical style and the everyday examples of inequalities he shared.

LanceVisit image2

Watch Dr O'Sullivan's presentation.