The Maniapoto Māori Trust Board (MMTB) are pleased to announce the establishment of Pūtiki, the Covid response community hub. “Pūtiki is the culmination of a collaborative approach led by Iwi alongside key community group representatives and funders to respond to the Covid-19 Omicron emergence and its impact within the region” says Chief Executive, Amber-lee Elliott.


Through the Waikato District Health Boards (DHB) Care in the Community hub approach, Pūtiki is focused on connecting with at-risk positive whānau cases across the Ōtorohanga and Waitomo Districts. This includes connecting whānau across the DHB region to our partner Covid Response hubs in Mōkau, Ngāti Haua, Ngāti Raukawa, Taumarunui, Kāwhia and Waikato.


Pūtiki comprises of four main core functions, specifically a Call Centre, Community and Welfare Support, Testing and Vaccination.


The Call Centre is equipped with operators fully trained by the DHB to utilise the National Contact Tracing system carrying out first engagement calls, triaging and follow-up wellbeing checks with Covid positive cases which are allocated daily. Included also are clinical escalation pathways defined by the DHB and in liaison with primary care practices in the region. This approach will ensure that whānau medical needs are met and directed to the relevant practitioners, as needed.


Community and Welfare delivery is supported by the Ministry of Social Development and also Wisegroup through the online HeretohelpU platform. Again, our operators also triage whānau seeking essential provisions and support while in isolation. This includes connecting whānau to various service providers throughout the region, such as Foodbanks, Whānau Ora providers and other support agencies to execute the safe delivery of well-being packages and services to whānau.


In October 2021, Te Ora o Ngātai, the Te Kūiti Covid Testing Centre was established in partnership with the DHB and continues providing community testing services, with the Rapid Antigen (RAT) as the primary diagnostic testing tool. A Vaccination programme is supported by Te Arawhiti, the DHB and key providers which approach is currently under review.


Pūtiki currently operates 7 days a week, 8:30am to 5:00pm with the view to extend hours as required. This will provide further opportunity to isolating whānau in need.


“The lifespan of the Pūtiki Covid Hub is limited, at least to the end of June 2022 which its existence is only made possible through current funding streams.  The continuation of Pūtiki operations beyond this timeframe will depend wholly upon the continued support and willingness from Te Arawhiti and Ministers’ to further fund this region’s Covid-19 Response plan” says Keith Ikin, MMTB Chairman.


“Our immediate focus is to partner and meet the needs of the community.  We will do what we can within our means, to ensure the well-being of our Iwi, our whānau and communities.“  says Keith.



Me tiaki tonu tātou i a tātou – Let’s continue to look after one another.

Edited – 3:20pm – 23/03/2022