Pataua residents are relishing the presence of Ki A Ora Ngātiwai's mobile GP clinic once a fortnight in the coastal community.
The local Māori health provider has offered its free GP services out of a self-contained van every second Friday for about two hours in Pataua South, seeing between 10-15 patients per day.
Given wait times for GP clinics are reaching up to three weeks currently, having a readily accessible alternative was a valuable resource.
"Besides the fact that it's free, you don't have to book an appointment, you can just show up," Pataua resident Ashley Wihongi said.
"Some places you have to wait at least a month to see a doctor."
Ashley, 30, believed Ki A Ora Ngātiwai's clinic had been more effective than her usual GP as she had more time to speak with staff and address her concerns.
Ashley's mother, Ruvē, who knew the value of a mobile clinic from her time living in Whangaruru, said the service had been valuable for the older members of the community.
"It's a great service, a lot of the elderly are coming in."
The clinic was led by Ki A Ora Ngātiwai GP Dr Kyle Eggleton. Ruvē said Eggleton had been very effective working in the community.
"[Kyle] talks to you in plain English, not doctor language. He's given people a lot of help and he gets onto it straight away, you're not waiting for it like with the hospital."
Eggleton said he was glad to see the clinic busy, with some people coming from as far as Whangārei Heads to seek treatment.
"We've got great support from the community and they were quite instrumental in expanding that clinic and spreading it by word of mouth," he said.
Ki A Ora Ngātiwai operated similar clinics in Tuparehuia (Bland Bay), Ōakura and Ruakākā.
"We're getting great feedback from the community, which is fantastic. Ki A Ora Ngātiwai is passionate about reaching out to the communities that we have some responsibility for," Eggleton said.
"People are struggling to see a GP...so if we can provide a service that is close to someone's home and is free, that's reducing a lot of barriers."