Death of child with Covid-19 prompts calls for Māori to be prioritised in NZ vaccine rollout
Māori boy who died last week was youngest New Zealander to die with virus and the first child
The first death of a child with Covid-19 in New Zealand has prompted calls for Māori children to be prioritised in the next stage of the vaccine rollout, as the country grapples with racial inequalities compounded by the pandemic.
A Māori boy, under the age of 10 and who had tested positive for the virus, died last week, becoming the youngest New Zealander to die with Covid, the Ministry of Health confirmed. It is unclear whether Covid-19 was the cause of the boy’s death, as New Zealand records all deaths of people considered active Covid cases in its official count. It is the country’s 49th death of a Covid-positive person since the start of the pandemic. Māori make up an estimated 17.1% of the population but they have accounted for 32% of all Covid-19 related deaths.