Story: Women’s health

Māori nurses

Māori nurses

There were few Māori nurses in the early 20th century. Ākenehi Hei (Whakatōhea and Whānau-ā-Apanui), seen here standing outside her tent hospital, was one of the first Māori registered nurses. After gaining registration in 1908, Hei was employed by the government to work independently in Māori communities. She treated the sick, and advised on health and sanitary measures (such as the placement of toilets). She died of typhoid in 1910 after nursing those suffering in a typhoid epidemic.

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Reference: CCL PhotoCD 11, IMG0062

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How to cite this page:

Megan Cook, 'Women’s health - Women’s health activism, 1840 to 1940s', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 4 December 2023)

Story by Megan Cook, published 5 May 2011