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Partnership to Provide Maori Free Health Insurance

Country Correspondent: Aisha Gomez

A deal between the Ngati Whatua Orakei trust and the Australian insurance company Nib will offer free private health insurance to 4,000 members of the Ngati Whatua Maori subtribe across the country. The insurance will cover surgical and medical hospitalization and options for specialist consultations, as well as help with day-to-day health costs for primary care, dental services, physiotherapy, and vision costs. New Zealand’s public health care system already offers free emergency and hospital health care, as well as low-cost primary care coverage. Nevertheless, Maori people experience greater unmet health needs than nonindigenous New Zealanders. Depending on the success of the collaboration, this public–private alliance may become a model to improve the health care of tribal groups.

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