NSW Health Dept: Closing the Knowledge Gap to Empower Maori Women in Pregnancy

NSW Health Dept

About The Project

Industry NSW (SOMANZ)
Services Professional translation
Languages Maori
Documents Multiple Information Documents


Background<br />

The NSW Health Department is committed to improving the health and well-being of women during pregnancy, with a special focus on culturally and linguistically diverse communities. One such community is the Maori-speaking population in Australia, which faces unique challenges in accessing health information due to language barriers.


The NSW Health Department partnered with AustralianTranslationServices (ATS) to translate critical health guidelines from English to Maori. This initiative aimed to enhance the accessibility of essential health information for Maori-speaking women during pregnancy.



Maori-speaking women in Australia often struggle to access health information in their native language. This lack of access can lead to misinformation about important health practices and guidelines, particularly during pregnancy, which can adversely affect both maternal and infant health outcomes.



ATS translated several key health documents, including:

  1. Information sheet 3A.1 – Use of aspirin in pregnancy_Maori
  2. Information sheet 3B.1 – Exercise in pregnancy_Maori
  3. Information sheet 5.2.2 – Sample home blood pressure log_Maori
  4. Information sheet 5.3.1 – Instructions on home blood pressure monitoring_Maori
  5. Information sheet 8.1 – Life after preeclampsia_Maori
  6. Top 10 Points for Women and Families from the SOMANZ HIPG 2023_Maori

These translations aimed to provide Maori-speaking women with clear and accurate information on managing hypertension, the importance of regular blood pressure monitoring, safe exercise practices during pregnancy, and post-pregnancy health considerations.


The translation process involved several steps:

  1. Initial Assessment: ATS conducted a thorough review of the original English documents to understand the context and importance of each piece of information.
  2. Translation: Experienced translators proficient in Maori undertook the translation work, ensuring cultural sensitivity and accuracy.
  3. Quality Assurance: Each translated document underwent a rigorous quality assurance process, including reviews by bilingual health professionals to ensure medical accuracy and clarity.
  4. Dissemination: The NSW Health Department distributed the translated documents through various channels, including healthcare providers, community health centres, and online platforms.



The translated documents significantly improved the accessibility of vital health information for Maori-speaking women. This initiative led to:

  • Increased Awareness: Maori-speaking women reported a better understanding of the risks and management of hypertension during pregnancy.
  • Improved Health Outcomes: Early detection and proper management of preeclampsia and other hypertensive disorders improved, contributing to healthier pregnancies and better maternal and infant health outcomes.
  • Empowerment: Women felt more empowered to take control of their health and make informed decisions during and after pregnancy.


The collaboration between ATS and the NSW Health Department demonstrates the critical role of language services in promoting public health. By providing accessible health information in Maori, ATS helped bridge the language gap, ensuring that Maori-speaking women could benefit from the same high standards of prenatal and postnatal care as their English-speaking counterparts. This case study highlights the importance of culturally and linguistically tailored health communication in improving health outcomes for diverse communities.