Waharoa Ki Te Toi
Waharoa ki te Toi - Our Kaitaia research unit
Waharoa ki te Toi is a new Kaitaia based research centre whose overarching principle is to create new knowledge to produce better health outcomes. It is a unique partnership model between the MOKO Foundation and the Maurice Wilkins Centre, which is a New Zealand Centre of Research Excellence that brings together over 150 of the country’s top scientists and clinicians from across our top Universities.
Waharoa ki te Toi will has its base in Kaitaia Hospital, supported by the Northland DHB, and will focus on biomedical and medical research programmes aimed at health issues relevant to the health of Māori and of rural New Zealand. Local Kaitaia clinician Dr Joel Pirini has been appointed as Clinical Director of the centre.
Currently our focus is on metabolic health (genetics linked to type-2 diabetes, obesity and the impact of sugar) as well as infectious disease (strep infections and links to rheumatic fever). Our research programmes involve state of the art approaches and show that Māori and regional communities can play a leading role in world class medical research. The centre is in the process of developing clinical studies in Kaitaia to build sustainable research platforms and recent funding from the Health Research Council of New Zealand will provide baseline funding for this until 2022.