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Page URL: https://practice.orangatamariki.govt.nz/our-work/care/caring-for-tamariki-in-care/supporting-tamariki-with-their-health-needs/our-responsibilities-regarding-health-related-costs/
Printed: 19/05/2024
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Last updated: 23/03/2021

Our responsibilities regarding health-related costs

Oranga Tamariki is responsible for meeting the cost of approved health and disability related services and treatments when there is a care agreement or custody order in place for te tamaiti or rangatahi.

Upcoming changes for this guidance

This content will be strengthened so it more completely reflects our commitment to practice framed by te Tiriti o Waitangi, based on a mana-enhancing paradigm for practice, and drawing from ​Te Ao Māori principles of oranga to support mana tamaiti, whakapapa and whanaungatanga. We each need to consider how we can apply these principles to our practice when reading this guidance. The following resources provide support:
Practice for working effectively with Māori
Our practice approach

All About Me plan

The All About Me plan should specify the holistic needs of te tamaiti or rangatahi, and the treatment, provider or service required to meet those assessed needs.

Universal services (primary health providers and publicly funded specialist services)

Universal health and disability services are generally considered to be services available for all citizens, regardless of means. While most universal services are accessible to eligible families free of charge, some services may have a fee or part payment. Universal services can also be helpful as they can broker access to specialist services that te tamaiti or rangatahi may need.

The Hand in Hand Book provides information on health and education universal services for 0 to 18 year olds.

Hand in Hand Book – orangatamariki.govt.nz

Private health services

Where a health service is an elective service (not required within 7 days of the determination that the service is required), the site manager will consider the need for the health service before agreeing to funding.

In considering whether a private or specialist service or treatment should be funded by us, we will consider the holistic cultural needs of te tamaiti or rangatahi, the urgency of that need, other options available to meet the need, and any impacts, both short and long term, for te tamaiti or rangatahi of not receiving the service or treatment.

National Care Standards

Payments or reimbursements to caregivers

For te tamaiti or rangatahi living with Oranga Tamariki approved caregivers (family/whānau and non-whānau), health and disability related costs are to be funded in addition to the caregiver allowance. Payments can either be made as a reimbursement to the carer, or paid directly to the service provider (such as a GP).

All Oranga Tamariki caregivers receive, in addition to the caregiver allowance, a ‘small cost payment’ ($20 per fortnight), to cover small incidental items, such as prescription costs, band aids, antiseptic cream, sun cream.

The following table provides a summary of key health and disability services and treatments and associated costs. We would expect to pay any partial or full fee if the service or treatment was identified as meeting an assessed need.

Service or treatment

Provider / cover


Primary health provider (GP, nurse)



0–12 years


13–18 years

Partial payment may be required

Indigenous, traditional healing practices

Rongōa Māori (mirimiri, romiromi, takutaku)

Pacific (massage, natural and herbal remedies, rituals)

May be provided at a primary health provider

Costs as above for age groups if through a primary health provider

Private healers, practitioners

Koha/donation or full payment required

Dental (0–18 years)

Standard treatments


Extra treatments (such as orthodontics)

Full payment required 

Specialist visits or clinics

Public hospital


Private hospital or clinic

Partial payment may be required (if funded by ACC) or full payment required 

Counselling or talking therapies

Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (DHB)


Sexual violence counselling

Fully funded by ACC if a claim is lodged to use an ACC registered counsellor

Counselling following physical injury

Partial or fully funded by ACC if a claim is accepted

Private therapist

Full payment required 

Complementary and alternative medicine (such as homeopathy, naturopathy, osteopathy)

Injury related

Partial or fully funded by ACC if a claim is accepted

Non-injury related

Full payment required 

Diagnostic testing (such as blood tests, urine tests)

Public hospital, GP referred

Normally free

X-rays or scans

Injury related

Partial or fully funded by ACC if a claim is accepted 

Non-injury related

Full payment required





Well Child/Tamariki Ora vision checks (4–6 weeks to 5 years) and Year 7 vision checks


Private optometrist or ophthalmologist

Full payment required

Optical glasses

Children’s spectacle subsidy may be an option. Otherwise, full payment required



Hearing services

Usually fully funded by Health 

Hearing aids

Usually fully funded by Health 

Private audiologist Partial or full payment required