Topic: Health

Protecting Our Mokopuna seminar to discuss high rates of Māori SUDI

  • Wellington
Photo /  Whakawhetū

A hui for over 100 whānau and workforce will be held at Kōkiri Marae tomorrow to discuss the factors that lead to Sudden Unexpected Death in Infancy, or SUDI.  This comes following the exceptionally high rates of Māori SUDI in the Wellington area.

Whakawhetū National Manager, Kathrine Clarke said, "There are many factors that lead to SUDI.  For Māori, the combined factors of high rates of smoking amongst our mums and bed-sharing mean that our pēpi are especially vulnerable.  Encouraging whānau to use the safe-sleeping device, wahakura, and supporting mum to quit smoking are two of our most significant strategies to bring Māori SUDI rates down."

Jeanine Tamati-Paratene, Whakawhetū Regional Advisor for Wellington, said, "We are convening this hui to reach both community and workforce because rates of SUDI for Māori in this area are so high.”

Tamati-Paratene adds, “From 2008-2012, 31 babies died of SUDI in the three district health boards covering the Wellington region.  That equates to six deaths a year or one baby every two months.  More than half of these deaths were in the Hutt Valley District Health Board and overall 71% of these deaths were pēpi Māori.”

Tomorrow's Protecting our Mokopuna Seminar has emerged out of a collaboration with Kōkiri Marae and other health providers in the Hutt Valley region.

Participants at the hui will hear from SUDI experts at the seminar including Dr David Tipene-Leach and Professor Ed Mitchell, Leith Porter-Samuels, Kahurangi Ross and testimonials from a group of young Māori parents.