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Perceptions of co-designing health promotion interventions with Indigenous communities in New Zealand

Abstract

Health inequities among Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities are well documented and the research literature includes robust discussions about innovative ways to reduce inequities including co-design. Co-designing health promotion interventions with Indigenous communities presents many benefits and challenges for researchers, health professionals and communities involved in the process. The purpose of this study was to identify the facilitators and barriers of co-designing a health promotion intervention with Māori communities. Additionally, this study considers a specific Māori co-design framework, He Pikinga Waiora (HPW). HPW is a participatory approach to creating interventions emphasizing community engagement, systems thinking and centred on Kaupapa Māori (an approach grounded in Māori worldviews). The research design for this study was Kaupapa Māori. Participants (n = 19) in this study were stakeholders in the New Zealand health sector. Participants were interviewed using an in-depth, semi-structured protocol. Thematic analysis was employed to analyse the data. Facilitators for co-designing health promotion interventions with Māori communities were collaboration and community voice. Barriers identified were mismanaged expectations and research constraints. Finally, facilitators for the HPW framework included providing clear guidelines and being grounded in Māori perspectives, while barriers included limited concrete case studies, jargon and questions about sustainability. Collaboration and inclusion of community voice supports the development of more effective co-design health promotion interventions within Māori communities which may address health inequities. The HPW framework offers clear guidelines and Māori perspectives which may assist in the development of effective co-design health promotion interventions, although areas for improvement were suggested.

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