Māori nurse practitioners connect for the first time at hui in Te Tai Tokerau

Māori nurse practitioners in Aotearoa came together for the first time ever at the end of last month, at the inaugural National Mātanga Tapuhi Māori (Nurse Practitioner) hui at Waimanoni marae in Te Tai Tokerau.

Nurse practitioners are mātanga or experts in their field and play a huge role in improving access to quality healthcare. They are highly qualified nurses who can work with patients on certain medical conditions without the direct supervision of a doctor, which includes prescribing medications and developing treatment plans.  

There are currently 703 nurse practitioners in Aotearoa, with 66 (9%) identifying as Māori. This hui was an important part of the mahi to support our Mātanga Tapuhi Māori and discuss strategies to grow advanced nursing practice in the health workforce. 

Te Aka Whai Ora Chief Nursing Officer Nadine Gray says the noho marae was a chance for the group to whakawhanaungatanga, celebrate all being together, and kōrero about current and planned evaluation research related to the impact of nurse practitioners on health outcomes.

“It was the first time in twenty years that Māori nurse practitioners in Aotearoa came together to wānanga. It was a special time that allowed us to connect, share stories, celebrate Māori Nurse Practitioners and the collective kaupapa of their work.

“It was fantastic to see those new to the nurse practitioner role attend, and nurse prescribers inspired to undertake the Nurse Practitioner Training Programme in 2024/25. The learning from members of our rōpū who have been in the industry for some time was so valuable.

“We all came away from the hui feeling inspired and excited about our future direction.” 

Nadine adds: “I would like to acknowledge mana whenua at Waimanoni marae for hosting us.”

She says due to the success of the hui, they now plan to meet annually.