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Indigenous engagement and experiences in a National Injury Study
  1. E H Wyeth*,
  2. B Hokowhitu,
  3. S Derrett,
  4. J D Langley
  1. Correspondence Department of Preventive and Social Medicine ,Ngai Tahu Maori Health Research Unit, Dunedin School of Medicine, University of Otago, PO Box 913 Dunedin 9054, New Zealand

Abstract

Context Māori, the indigenous population in New Zealand, have been subject to research and associated policies with negative consequences. Researchers have been challenged by Māori to conduct research that is acceptable, accountable and relevant. Much of this debate has taken place within the framework of the Treaty of Waitangi, a treaty of cession signed between Māori and British Crown representatives in 1840.

Objectives Our cohort study, the Prospective Outcomes of Injury Study, aims to quantitatively identify predictors of disability following injury, and qualitatively explore lived experiences and perceptions of injury outcomes. This presentation examines how, in developing this study, we responded to the Treaty. We will present the Māori qualitative results. Key Messages Our responses to the Treaty included: consultation with Māori, questionnaire translation, appointment of interviewers fluent in Māori, over-sampling Māori participants to allow Māori-specific analyses, and a Māori-specific qualitative component. Māori experiences reported in the qualitative component are varied and include: job loss, depression, loss of faith in the health system and family stress.

Discussion While much of this presentation turns on New Zealands history, we believe it is of relevance to health researchers in other former settler societies. Rather than presenting an ideal model for population-level research, we hope that by describing our efforts, we can prompt wider debate of the complex realities of the research environment, which is both scientifically and culturally located. The qualitative study allows us to explore, in greater depth, the factors that contribute to injury outcomes for Māori specifically.

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