Moving together into the next phase of the pandemic

In a recent interview for Newshub Nation, Pasifika Medical Association (PMA) member Dr Api Talemaitoga spoke about some of the challenges Pacific communities continue to face in this current Covid-19 outbreak.

One of these challenges include the impact of home isolation on multigenerational families, where it is not possible for them to safely isolate. Dr Talemaitoga emphasizes that the process needs to be stronger and appropriately managed.

“The concern is that we do not assess them properly and we do not do the follow-up properly. We need to be careful [and] that we’ve got someone they trust, like a GP whose built up that relationship, who knows their non-Covid health problems and can manage it well.

We’re working really hard with the Pasifika team in the Northern Region Coordination Centre to have an integrated model that gives the warm handover to the GP for caring for their patients in the community.”

Dr Talemaitoga says the triage process needs to be tightened, so people’s needs are better understood and catered to.

“We know there will be multigenerational families; 40% of Pasifika families live in overcrowded houses and there might be people not enrolled with a general practice or there might be several people within the household who have a different GP. We need to understand all of those about the community.”

Dr Talemaitoga has been actively involved in encouraging Pacific communities in Auckland to get vaccinated.

“Māori and Pacific carry a higher disease burden than the rest of the population and we know those populations will lag in their vaccination rates and will bear the brunt if there’s another outbreak.

I’m positive and I want to move forward and support anybody that wants to get vaccinated. It’s the way we can all protect each other.”

Watch the full interview here.

#pmafamily #pmaunite

Date: Friday 19 November 2021