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Ngā Tohu o te Ora: traditional Māori healing and wellness outcomes

The Ngā Tohu o te Ora (signs of wellness) research project was developed to investigate outcomes associated with rongoā Māori, in order that this traditional practice might enjoy increased support as a funded service. The primary aims were to: 1. Identify wellness outcome measures used by traditional Māori healers, and 2. Develop and test a framework of traditional Māori wellness outcome measures. Secondary aims included integrating the wellness outcomes framework with the Pūrākau framework (developed by the authors in a previous HRC seeding grant), and disseminating research findings among healing, health service delivery and research communities. 10 Work towards Aims 1 and 2 were undertaken in two distinct stages in the research: identifying wellness outcomes and weaving them together in the form of a framework comprised Stage I research activities (June 2008 - December 2009), and testing the use of the framework by Whare Oranga constituted Stage II (January 2010 - July 2011). Recognising the importance of meaningful engagement for both research 'success' and healer benefit, emphasis was placed on ensuring high quality relationships between the research team and participating practitioners/Whare Oranga throughout; this constituted an implicit process aim. Several further aims emerged from engagement with healers, within which healers and research team members discussed potential service-oriented benefits that the research project would work towards. These included: • Enhancing the capacity of Whare Oranga to provide service information to funders that might support their wider understanding of rongoā Māori, with a view to securing additional contracts; • Providing newly established or developing Whare Oranga with tools and frameworks to support and strengthen their entry into health service provision in their local communities; and • Articulating clearly defined, assessable and progressive steps toward targeted domains of wellbeing for use by practitioners and their clients.
Type of thesis
Ahuriri-Driscoll, A., Hudson, M., Bishara, I., Milne, M., & Stewart, M. (2012). Ngā Tohu o te Ora: traditional Māori healing and wellness outcomes (Report). ESR.
© 2012 Institute of Environmental Science and Research (ESR). Used with permission.