Te Rau Hinengaro: The New Zealand mental health study posterAuthor: Le Va
Publication date: 18 October 2011
Le Va and the Research programme within Te Pou have developed a poster to promote Te Rau Hinengaro to the sector.
Te Rau Hinengaro was the largest mental health survey ever undertaken in New Zealand and is a groundbreaking piece of research. The survey demonstrated that Pacific people experience mental disorders at higher levels than the general population.
This is particularly significant as it is contrary to previous held beliefs that Pacific people have relatively low levels of mental illness. This provides important information for future policy planning.
The survey also found that Pacific people in the survey who experienced serious disorders were less likely to access treatment than the total New Zealand population. This is a serious challenge for the mental health sector.
Anecdotal evidence suggests that many Pacific mental health service providers and clinicians are unaware of the survey.
Key findings highlighted in the survey and poster
- A total of 2,374 Pacific people were interviewed: 49.2% Samoan, 20.7% Cook Island Maori, 16.5% Tongan and 17.5% other Pacific people.
- One in four Pacific people (25%) experienced mental disorder in the past 12 months compared with 20.7% in the general New Zealand population.
- 12-month access to health service treatment is very low.
- Suicidality is increasing amongst Pacific people.
- Pacific people born in the Pacific Islands who migrate to New Zealand after the age of 18 experience far less mental disorders.
- Higher rates of hazardous alcohol use was also found to be more prevalent amongst Pacific people.
- Having a mental disorder or substance use disorder increases the frequency of co-morbid mental disorders.
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