Pharmac sets up Māori directorate and finalises Te Tiriti policy

Update Kauneke Update

A new Māori Directorate has been established at Te Pātaka Whaioranga - Pharmac, and Trevor Simpson (Tūhoe, Ngāti Awa) was appointed as the new Kaituruki Māori (Director) to lead.


Pharmac has also finalised its Te Tiriti o Waitangi policy to maximise its contribution to achieving equitable health outcomes for Māori.

The new Māori Directorate will focus on:

  • lifting our Māori capability and capacity across the organisation,
  • helping the organisation to meet its Te Tiriti accountabilities,
  • building an organisation that understands how to work and partner with Māori.

Additionally, Pharmac’s Te Tiriti o Waitangi policy has been finalised. This policy demonstrates our commitment to our Tiriti partnership. It pledges to systematically examine and eliminate institutional racism and introduce pro-equity measures that will help us maximise our contribution to achieving equitable health outcomes for Māori.

“Te Tiriti o Waitangi sets the enduring foundation for Te Pātaka Whaioranga – Pharmac to achieve the best health outcomes for Māori,” says Trevor Simpson (Tūhoe, Ngāti Awa). “The Māori directorate will support our focus on lifting our Māori capability and capacity across the organisation. It will also strengthen our understanding on how to effectively partner with Māori, as well as support all our Māori staff.”

“Our mahi is about collaborating with the health sector to develop strategies that enable better medicine access and tackle health inequities for whānau, hapū and iwi,” says Mr Simpson.

“Creating the Māori Directorate reflects the organisational response to the Pharmac Review while also acknowledging the many years of advocacy for a Māori Directorate, both from internal Māori staff and our Māori stakeholders. It signals a critical shift towards building an organisation that is fit for purpose in the new health system.”

“It’s a steep learning curve and we are still climbing. But the appetite from Te Pātaka Whaioranga – Pharmac to step back, reflect on what we do, and collaboratively consider how we can truly bring te Tiriti and equity considerations across all our work is really heartening,” says Mr Simpson.

This story is part of our new Kauneke Update 

The Kauneke update will keep you informed on important news and progress towards Te Pātaka Whaioranga – Pharmac's strategic goals. In te reo Māori, kauneke means to develop and move forward.