Te Tumu Waiora - te reo for ‘to head towards wellness’ - is a new model of primary mental health and addictions care and support which aims to provide all New Zealanders experiencing mental distress or addictions challenges with access to convenient, high quality, integrated and person-centred care and support.
The model puts mental health and wellbeing at the heart of general practice with focused roles, Health Improvement Practitioners and Health Coaches, working as part of the general practice team. This model allows for a 'warm handover' which means that a GP or nurse in the general practice can offer someone who is experiencing mental distress or addiction issues the option of seeing the HIP in the same location quickly – often immediately.
The HIPs and Health Coaches provide advice and support based on individualised goals, promoting self-management and work closely with local community NGO support workers to ensure people can access the full range of help they need.
This model is being implemented widely across Canterbury. The first tranche, which will be rolled out to the University of Canterbury and Linwood Medical Centre, will see new HIPs and Health Coaches available within practices.