New Cook Island GPs

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Congratulations to Dr Teariki Puni and Dr Koko Lwin who recently graduated with the Cook Islands General Practice Fellowship.

A ceremony was held in Rarotonga on December 18, 2020 where both doctors were awarded  their Fellowship by former Secretary of Health Dr Josephine Aumea Herman.

The Cook Islands General Practice training programme was established in 2016 by the Cook Islands Ministry of Health under former Secretary of Health Elizabeth Iro, in partnership with University of Otago and the RNZCGP. The aim of the programme is to build local capacity and leadership in primary and frontline care. The academic component of the programme is made up of four distance taught papers from the Rural Postgraduate programme. The clinical component involves 12-24 months in NZ based clinical practice (rural and urban general practice and emergency medicine). The establishment by Otago of a Pacific Islands Nation liaison role (currently held by rural doctor Kati Blattner) provides support and navigation for the doctors studying on the programme. 

Many NZ based doctors know Teariki and Koko having completed postgraduate papers with them, crossed paths during their NZ clinical attachments or spent time working alongside them in the Cook Islands.

Teariki Puni and Koko Lwin follow in the footsteps of Nini Wynn and Mareta Jacobs who completed their fellowship in 2019 and 2017 respectively.


Words provided by Dr. Katharina Blattner

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