Vacancy - Executive Director Health Improvement & Equity - Hawke’s Bay District Health Board

24 Oct 2018 1:11 PM | Anonymous

Hawke’s Bay District Health Board (HBDHB) is responsible for funding and providing public health services to a population of 165,000 with 3200 staff through a service network that covers the east coast of the North Island of New Zealand.

HBDHB seeks to appoint a strategic leader and experienced team manager with population and public health improvement experience to work collaboratively with multiple agencies and the DHB’s teams to improve health outcomes and reduce inequities within the district’s communities.

The Executive Director will also support the Chief Executive Officer on the interagency strategy, bringing together Iwi, Councils, Ministry of Social Development (MSD), Ministry of Education (MoE) and other key agencies ensuring strong and positive relationships are forged that enable a whole of district systems level response.

The directorate will encompass Population Health, Pacific Health and Maori Health, Equity and Intersectoral Development. This position will work particularly closely with the Executive Director of Primary Care ensuring the health teams across the district activate positive and sustainable health outcomes for the community.

To access the Candidate Information Pack and apply online, visit

Applications close Sunday 4th November 2018

Applications to be submitted to : Kaavya Nithi

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Letter to the Listener 28 July 2017 in response to Fever Pitch (Listener 21 July 2017)

Catherine Woulfe’s thorough investigation of rheumatic fever brings to the surface a range of important questions not only about this cruel disease, but also wider issues about health policy. The Government’s bold initiative to reduce the incidence of rheumatic fever as one of its 'Better Public Service' targets in 2012 certainly raised awareness of rheumatic fever for the general public as well as communities and families directly affected. But even when medical science and the public have a clearer understanding of the immediate causes of rheumatic fever, interventions like the $65m ‘sore throats matter’ still won’t stop the epidemic. 

Ramona Tiatia’s blunt description of the experience of affected families not only painted a picture of the impact on affected families and communities, it also highlighted the invidious choices our health funders face.  How much should we prioritise health spending between response to the urgent need of young people whose lives and potential can be devastated by the disease versus the expense of addressing the economic and social factors that underlie the reasons we have this epidemic at all?   

As several of the clinicians interviewed pointed out, it’s only when the poverty and over-crowded housing issues are addressed that we will make a real difference.

Rheumatic fever illustrates the contradictions in our health system identified in the recent American Commonwealth Fund report. Of the 11 countries the Fund monitors, the work our health professionals do is ranked among the highest. But our overall performance as a health system falls to the middle ranking because of our poor performance on access and equity. The Fund also notes that our per capita expenditure is among the cheapest. 

Failure to invest in real prevention - that is, poverty, housing, good nutrition etc. - will continue to drive conditions like rheumatic fever, whether the immediate cause is strep throat or skin sores, until we invest upstream.

Why not spend more on these conditions - the economic and social determinants of health? 

We all pay in the long run - the young people whose misery we tolerate and whose potential remains unfulfilled, the families whose sacrifices are unrewarded, and the taxpayer who picks up the tab.

Ngā mihi,
Warren Lindberg

CE Public Health Association of New Zealand


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