Maori representation of the Hawke's Bay District Health Board's (DHB) workforce continues to increase as it works towards a more "culturally competent workforce".
At the end of January, 12 per cent of the workforce described themselves as Maori, up from 11 per cent for January 2014, a report states. The DHB, Hawke's Bay's largest employer, aims to help increase its engagement with Maori through a more representative workforce - Maori comprise 25 per cent of the region's population - as well as staff training.
The DHB decided to use its staff as one strategy to accelerate Maori health indicators in 2013. The target for Maori staff representation is set annually by the senior management team. Over the previous four years the target increased about 10 per cent. January's figure is short of the 2014/15 target of 13 per cent, giving a shortage of 39 Maori.
Of the DHB's 2815 staff more than half are nurses, with 10 per cent Maori. Of 267 medical staff, 3 per cent are Maori.
AdvertisementAdvertise with NZME.
A report to the DHB, by Chief Nursing Officer Chris McKenna and Human Resources General Manager John McKeefry, said nurses offered the biggest opportunity to increase Maori representation.
"We continue to promote the recruitment of Maori to all hiring managers and utilise our Maori networks to promote roles to Maori," the report said.
All staff have training courses available such as Engaging Effectively with Maori and on the Treaty of Waitangi.
When presenting his report to yesterday's DHB board meeting, Mr McKeefry said the staff sectors with the highest Maori representation also had the highest staff turnover.
DHB chairman Kevin Atkinson observed that a large percentage of nursing graduates were Maori. "Where do they go if they don't come here?" he said.
Ms McKenna said about 27 per cent of Hawke's Bay nursing graduates were Maori but many went into other health sectors or left the region.