Priority | Equity for Māori


PHARMAC considers inequitable outcomes for Māori unfair and unjust, and also avoidable, and is actively working to eliminate them.

What we've heard

“Māori want access to medicines full stop.”

“When we get it right for Māori, we get it right for everyone.”


  • Māori are the priority population for all equity work as a Te Tiriti o Waitangi partner.
  • Inequity in access to medicines for Māori is eliminated.
  • PHARMAC has built and earned trust from Māori, which is essential for the acceptance of medicines, medicines information and medicine literacy.
  • PHARMAC is routinely and transparently reporting on Māori access to hospital medical devices and medicines to the extent that data allows and is working to address data gaps.

How we will measure this

  • Rates of Māori accessing funded medicines and related products (trend of decreasing equity gaps).
  • Medicines access equity for Māori is on track to being achieved. 

June 2021 update

We have:

  • developed equity assessment tool for PHARMAC’s clinical advisory network
  • developed outcome measures for Māori medicines access.

By mid-2021 we aimed to…

  • Start to work alongside other agencies and organisations to influence and drive equitable access to medicines and enhance Māori wellbeing.
  • Develop outcome measures for Māori medicines access and Māori medicines literacy.

By the end of 2021 we will have… 

  • Plans in place to work with identified partners to deliver equity initiatives for Māori.
  • Changes to PHARMAC’s prioritisation process have been identified to ensure equity for Māori.
  • Frameworks to measure progress on outcomes are established and functioning.
  • Identified where PHARMAC is making a difference in access equity and where we can improve.

By mid-2022 we will have… 

  • Shared equity outcome measures with agencies to influence and drive equity and Māori wellbeing.
  • Reviewed and clarified with sector partners a long-term, national approach for enhancing whānau Māori knowledge about medicines.

By 2023 we will have...

  • Improved rates of Māori accessing funded medicines and related products (trend of decreasing equity gaps). 
  • Medicines access equity for Māori is on track to being achieved. 
  • Developed a plan to understand Māori inequities in access to hospital medical devices. 
  • PHARMAC can clearly identify how we are making a difference for Māori.

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