Our Community

Pegasus Health's aim is to improve the health of everyone in our enrolled communities. A foundation to achieving that is knowing who our communities are and finding out what they need. Once we understand that, we can plan and deliver programmes and services.

Understanding OUR Community

First we look at what we know about our people, and some of that information comes from data. Census data is very important in health services planning, as is current population data we collect about our enrolled patients. For instance, we believe we have about 25,051 Maori, 9,293 Pacific Island (Samoan, Tongan, Fijian, Cook Island Maori, Other, Niuean and Tokelauan) and 24,150 Asian (Chinese, Other, South East Asian and Indian) as of 31 January 2013.

Second we consult with our community advisors and key partners. These organisations represent different aspects of our communities, such as Maori, Pacific, Asian, Refugee and Migrants. 

Why is this important? For two reasons:

  1. We need to ensure we have the money to look after our region, so accurate numbers will help get funding from the Ministry of Health. Age and ethnicity of our communities play a big part in health planning.
  2. Some segments of our communities are not able to access the health care they need to stay well, so they may need special services and extra help.

Advisory Groups

Pegasus Health supports four advisory groups:

  • Community Board (a formally established standing committee of the Pegasus Health Board)
  • Te Kàhui o Papaki Kà Tai
  • Pacific Reference Group
  • Asian and Migrant Health Advisory Group
Community Board

This newly formed board builds on the foundation of the long-standing Pegasus Health Community Advisory Board. The Community Board will contribute to the region's health and the health care system by engaging with the community and working alongside clinical leaders and others at a strategic level. They will make recommendations on:

  • how to address health inequalities,
  • needs identification,
  • meeting the needs of diverse populations,
  • planning and prioritisation,
  • the ethical use of finite resources,
  • implementation and evaluation of primary and community-based health care services and programmes.  

The new Community Board members are listed below. For more information on board members, view their biographies here.

  • Professor Andrew Hornblow
  • Helen Lockett
  • Dr Matea Gillies
  • Michael Aitken
  • Natu Rama
  • Peter Laloli
  • Peter Townsend
  • Rob Earle
  • Tanya McCall
  • Wendy Dallas-Katoa
Te KÀhui o Papaki KÀ Tai (TKOPT)

Te Kàhui o Papaki Kà Tai is a Canterbury-wide combined group of primary care organisations, clinicians, community organisations, Manawhenua (local iwi representation), Maori community provider and District Health Board.


The name refers to 'the coming together of the seas'; Te Moana Nui a Kiwa (Pacific Ocean) and Te Tai o Rehua (Tasman Sea) at Cape Reinga. Symbolically, 'Te Kàhui' refers to the coming together of all groups and 'Papaki Kà Tai' the place where the weaves slap/crash together, referring to the korero or discussion that occurs as a result. Reflected in the design of the tohu are the local elements, Te Tiritiri o te Moana (the Southern Alps), Kà Pàkiwi-whakatekateka-a-Waitaha (the Canterbury Plains) and Te Moana Nui a Kiwa (Pacific Ocean).

Chaired by Dr Ramon Pink (Community and Public Health), this Màori health advisory group provides leadership, advice and influences in ways so that Màori health is consistently considered throughout the whole of Canterbury health system.

Màori are a young growing population (over half are under the age of 22 years), and number in total around 31,000, or eight percent of the total population in Canterbury. On average they have the poorest health status of any ethnic group. This is recognised both nationally and locally as unacceptable.

Te Kàhui o Papaki Kà Tai aspires to achieving equitable health outcomes for Maori and support Maori to 'flourish' and achieve their maximum health and well-being.

Pacific Reference Group

This group was formed in recognition of the health inequalities of our Pacific population. Pacific peoples are a young, ethnically diverse population of around 9,000 (2.2%) in Canterbury and they have specific needs in health outcomes.

Pacific Reference Group compr

As a population group, Pacific people have poor health outcomes, particularly related to long term conditions (such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease). They also experience issues with access to health services. The Pacific Reference Group has developed the Pacific Health Plan and aims to:

  • Improve access to and appropriateness of general practice for the Pacific community;
  • Participate in the delivery of primary care services, together with other Pacific providers in Christchurch;
  • Develop and implement the Pacific Health Plan; and
  • Facilitate communication between Pegasus and other Pacific primary care providers.
Asian & Migrant Health Advisory Group

The Asian and Migrant Health Advisory Group has come together to acknowledge the size and diversity of these populations in Canterbury. This group provides advice on ways to improve health outcomes for Asians and Migrants and has a current focus on smoking cessation and cervical screening.

Being culturally response to Maori, Pacific peoples and Asian/Migrant communities is key to improving access to services and health outcomes. Cultural Competence Training is offered to general practice teams and Pegasus Health staff.

Partner Organisations

Many organisations come together to support different communities such as aged people, refugee and migrant communities, children and young people and Maori and Pacific peoples. In Canterbury we work together to achieve better patient outcomes and reduce rates of disease.


Pegasus Health provides a range of scholarships, including the Paul McCormack General Practice Scholarship and summer scholarships for medical and health science students from the University of Otago and University of Canterbury - something that benefits not just the students, but primary health and health care as a whole.

 Paul McCormack General Practice Scholarship Information

To read the media release about the scholarships awarded in 2014 for Maori, Pacific and Refugee and Migrant students, please click here.

Together, Pegasus Health and the communities we support can help build the health system we need.