Associate Health Minister Steve Chadwick will today visit the WAVES Youth Health Service in New Plymouth.
The service, which is a part of Taranaki Youth Health Trust, provides free health services, peer/youth support services and recreational programmes to young people aged 10-25 years in New Plymouth.
"Youth have specific health needs and evidence shows that they do not readily access health services, even when they need to. Youth health and wellbeing are important issues, and there is strong evidence for supporting the development of health services that are accessible and appropriate to youth," said Steve Chadwick.
Health services at WAVES include a nurse practitioner trained to meet the needs of youth and able to write prescriptions, advice from a nurse, and sessions with a GP, a clinical psychologist, and a social worker. WAVES also offer peer support and parent support services.
“The passion and commitment of the WAVES workers are making a positive difference to health outcomes in Taranaki. From healthy eating plans to practical health care, WAVES is proactively responding to the needs of Taranaki youth.”
WAVES was established by Louise Roebuck, a Nurse Practitioner in Primary Health Care and Youth Health. It was opened in April 2007 and set up with help from charitable trusts and corporate sponsors.
As well as being a metaphor for the turbulent experience of youth, the name WAVES was chosen to commemorate the contribution of the late Richard Parsons - a New Plymouth youth drug and alcohol counsellor who was passionate about surfing.