Planning needed to service aging Maori
|26 Apr 2017 09:27 AM|
|UMA Broadcasting Ltd|
University of Auckland researchers say the number of older Maori needing care on a more than daily basis could increase by more than 200 percent over the next decade.
It’s one of the findings of Te Puawaitanga O Nga Tapuwae Kia Ora Tonu, the world’s first longitudinal study of aging in an indigenous population.
The study, also known as LiLACS or Life and Living in Advanced Age, started in 2010 by interviewing 421 Maori and 516 non-Maori in the Bay of Plenty and Lakes District Health Board areas.
At the time there were just under 4000 Maori in New Zealand aged 80 and over.
By 2026, this will increase to almost 12,000 people.
The study found 43 percent of older Maori and a third of non-Maori were independent and needed no regular assistance or less than weekly assistance.
However, an increasing number will need care on a daily basis, such as with meal preparation, dressing or bathing.
Some will need even more critical care.
Professor Ngaire Kerse, the head of population health, says planning is needed so services are available to allow people to manage at home.
She says the rate of change is greatest for Maori, which will present challenges for Maori society.