[Editor note, Blakely and Wilson: This is an invited blog by Professor Elaine Rush, in which she overviews the recent Budget from a child health perspective, and then lays out the case and evidence for Project Energize].
Professor Elaine Rush, AUT
The highlight of the 2014 Budget for children was $90 million to make GP visits and prescriptions free for children aged under 13 from 1 July 2015. There was also $40 million for a new Healthy Families NZ campaign to encourage New Zealanders to eat healthier and exercise more. This is modelled on the Australian Health Together Victoria P
rogramme which encompasses more than schools and is a systems approach. This is needed too – we need to work upstream, downstream and with communities. We also need to have evaluations to show that this type of investment is working – accountability for the money that the government and agencies charged to invest in New Zealand for the people. Continue reading