11 November 2004
‘When do we draw a line?’
“New Zealanders will be outraged that the personal health history of Donna Awatere-Huata was divulged by medical
practitioners, and then splashed across the front pages of our newspaper’ said Mrs Turia today, co-leader of the Maori
‘It gives me little confidence in our health system, if patient confidentiality can count for nothing’ said Mrs Turia.
‘I am incensed that personal details of conversations Mrs Awatere-Huata had with her nurse and specialist surgeon, have
been thrown up for public speculation’.
‘I understand the fascination of the media with matters pertaining to public spending and accountability of the taxpayer
dollar’ said Mrs Turia. ‘But to expose the subject of confidential consultations with one’s doctor for media consumption
seems to me to go far beyond the limits of what is acceptable’.
“We should be able to at the very least expect that the relationship with your Doctor or Specialist will be
confidential”, she said.
‘The Health and Disability Commissioner should look in to this matter immediately’.
‘Frankly, the majority of Maori women who talk to me or my office are sick to death of the negativity around Donna’s
operation. She looks fabulous. Who cares whether she ran ten miles, went on a food free diet or had a stomach stapling
operation. Certainly all the people who we know don’t care about such personal information’ stated Mrs Turia.