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Dr Rawiri Taonui |Covid-19 Update for Māori 10 April 2020 | | Active Cases Decrease Further; Māori Percentage Declining, Māori &Pacific Testing Data Issues
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Covid-19 Update for Māori 10 April 2020 | | Active Cases Decrease Further; Māori Percentage Declining, Māori &Pacific Testing Data Issues
Dr Rawiri Taonui

1. Total Cases

New Zealand has 44 new cases today and 1283 in total. 85% are associated with overseas travel and their contacts. The number of new cases reverses the previous five day decline (89-67-54-50-29) but remains lower than previous peaks of 80 to 90 per day. With significant testing taking place, this is positive.

Active Cases Stable

373 people have recovered. Active Cases (the total of all cases less those who have recovered) is 910 a further positive downward step.

          pIC11004

Clusters

At 425 cases, the 12 clusters account for nearly 30% of all cases. Travel (and contacts) account for 85% of all cases. With new quarantine and isolation rules, this gives confidence against community transmission.

2. Māori Cases

Total & Percentage

There are 3 new Māori cases and 103 in total. The Māori percentage decrease incrementally to 8.0% of all cases. With the majority cases concerning Pākehā and travel, credit is due to the tribal/territorial checkpoints.

          PIC21004

3. Pacific Peoples Cases

There are 6 new Pacific cases. This is an increase of 13% which is a concern. Conversely, it may reflect lifting testing in Pacific communities.

          PIC3 1004

4. Testing Data & Information

Testing total is at 55,685 or 11150 per million of population. That compares very well on the world level.

The Government has begun releasing more ethnic data on testing. Yesterday there were two releases about the ethnic ratios of testing. There are concerns about the data.

At 40,000, tests the Ministry of Health reports that Māori are 14.4% of those tested and Pacific Peoples are 7.2%.

There are issues and concerns with the data.

  •  Testing for Māori and Pacific demographic is below the 2018 Census - Māori 16.5% and Pacific 9%.
  •  The Ministry uses a rate of tests per 1,000 of population to index coverage. Māori are second lowest at 7.4.
  •  Pacific are the highest at 9 per 1,000, which looks positive. However, the Ministry model of population is based on single primary identity. This model does not count at least 60,000 Pacific people from the 2018 Census. Including a modest increase, the testing ratio is closer to 7.5 per 1,000 and as low as that for Māori.
  • The Ministry did not release testing by ethnicity for each DHB. While the overall testing for Māori is 14.4% , figures from the Nelson-Marlborough region show that testing has only included 2.7% Māori although Māori are 10.5 of the DHB population. This tells us that some DHBs are testing high numbers of Māori and others low numbers.

The Ministry’s reluctance to release DHB data by ethnicity reflects a white risk-management approach to data and information for Māori and Pacific communities. Information is not a privilege. Information is power and our communities need this information to empower them to make the right decisions and choices in the fight against Covid-19. Supposedly we are all in this together.

          PIC4 1004Noho haumaru, stay safe and stay self-sovereign, Dr Rawiri Taonui

 

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