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Exploring Māori and non-Māori mental health nurses' perceptions of Te Whare Tapa Whā: A mixed methods study looking at Māori and non-Māori mental health nurses' perceptions of Te Whare Tapa Whā within the Waikato region

Background: Te Whare Tapa Whā is a well-recognised Māori model of health and wellbeing which is embraced within the health system in Aotearoa/ New Zealand. Although it can be applied in different specialties, the impacts generated from this model were first noticed in mental health, as this model was created by Mason Durie who is a psychiatrist. Research has shown this model provided an opportunity for Māori to have a voice in their health. Objective: This study aims were to explore mental health nurses’ perceptions of the Māori Health model, Te Whare Tapa Whā, and how their beliefs and values may impact them implementing this model into their care. Methods: A mixed methods approach was utilised for this study. Phase one was about gathering quantitative data, collecting statistical data through surveys. The first phase helped with the formulate interview schedule, which was the beginning of the next phase. Phase two was semi structured interviews which helped with the gathering of qualitative data. Data were analysed using descriptive statistics and thematic analysis. Participants: Mental health nurses within the Waikato region were the participants for this research study. A survey was distributed to mental health nurses in the Waikato area and 53 responded. After the survey, semi structured one on one interviews were conducted with the researcher. Total of 8 interviews; (n = 6) Māori mental health nurses and (n = 2) Non-Māori mental health nurses. Results: The survey showed that more than half the nurses had a positive perspective on Te Whare Tapa Whā and felt it was good for nursing care. They were able to identify barriers to implementation. There were mixed responses on feeling supported to use Te Whare Tapa Whā in the workplace. Four over-arching themes were identified from the interviews . These were; Māori, clinical practice, organisation level and individual factors. Conclusion: Overall, all mental health nurses had a positive perception of Te Whare Tapa Whā and the impacts it can have on nursing care. Most identified barriers which can impact whether they can actually use it in practice. Māori and non-Māori nurses had different depths of knowledge, cultural worldviews and clinical practice experiences, creating complexities with implementation. These beliefs, perceptions and experiences were highlighted in this study.
Type of thesis
The University of Waikato
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