Health Minister Jonathan Coleman is praising an innovative programme in the Far North which aims to better support people with long-term musculoskeletal conditions.

“The Government invested $6 million in Budget 2015 to create community based early intervention multi-disciplinary teams designed to better support patients with musculoskeletal conditions like arthritis,” says Dr Coleman.

“We have 17 of these Mobility Action Teams across the country which are all trialling innovative community led approaches.

“A great example of this is the new programme launched in the Far North. It aims to connect participants over a five week period with the knowledge, inspiration and medical support they need to live life to their fullest.

“The programme includes a series of short films featuring people living in Hokianga with musculoskeletal conditions. They are very personal stories about individuals learning ways to stay active and motivated.

“The films show how making small changes can help people both improve their health as well as their general wellbeing.

“Participants then go through a supported programme of exercise and education delivered by a local allied health professional, such as a physio.

“As part of the programme, they can also connect with an Auckland-based multidisciplinary team for support via videoconferencing.

“This is a great example of utilising technology, which if successful could be adapted for other remote or rural communities.”

The six films in the series were developed by Awa Films in partnership with Active+, Northland DHB, Hokianga Health Enterprise Trust, Te Tai Tokerau PHO and the Ministry of Health.

For more information about the Mobility Action Programme and the current Mobility Action Teams at:

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