News bulletin 23 May 2018

on 23 May

Welcome to the College of Nurses Aotearoa News Update.
No. 398,  Wednesday 23 May 2018

Weekly news round up of nursing and health information in New Zealand and internationally


Nurse of the Year - Tracey Kunac
Tracey Kunac’s hugely positive impact on her patients and colleagues is recognised in her selection as Waikato DHB’s Nurse of the Year.
As a clinical nurse specialist within the Infectious Diseases team, Tracey manages patients in hospital who need to transition to intravenous antibiotics at home under the supervision of a district nurse. This is known as the OPIVA (outpatient intravenous antibiotic) service.
Read more here

Putting care into ICU stays
For most patients admitted to an intensive care unit (ICU) in New Zealand their stay is short, however, as a consequence of advances in life-sustaining therapies a new group of patients has emerged. Surviving their initial critical illness, these patients become dependent on life-sustaining interventions for a prolonged period.
Read more here

Flu season: Over half of staff not vaccinated at two Auckland health boards
Two of Auckland's health boards have fewer than half of its staff vaccinated as the flu season nears.
One of those health boards puts that down to staff being spread out across different locations.
Read more here

Director-General of Health appointment and new interim chief executive at CCDHB
The Capital and Coast DHB Board today congratulated Dr Ashley Bloomfield on his appointment to the role of Director-General of Health, and is pleased to announce former Whanganui DHB chief executive Julie Patterson as interim chief executive to replace Dr Bloomfield.
Read more here


New assessment tool to improve funding and innovation in elderly care
New Zealanders entering residential aged care today are much older and have more complex needs than in the past and the pressures on funding services is increasing.
Read more here


Urgent action needed to address increasing asthma hospital admissions
Urgent action is needed to address childhood asthma, health care professionals say, as a new report shows Rotorua has the second highest rate of child hospital admissions for the condition.
Read more here

'My Asthma' app update launches today to help kiwi families with asthma
The Asthma and Respiratory Foundation NZ launches an update to the 'My Asthma' app to help keep asthma management simple for the many kiwi families that have members with this condition. 
Read more here


Ground-breaking child-cancer trial kicks off in New Zealand
A ground-breaking trial exploring new treatments for child cancer is launching in New Zealand today, giving high hopes to families like that of 12 year-old Fynn Abbott who was diagnosed with a hard-to-detect type of cancer at the age of seven after several months of misdiagnosis.
Read more here


Three ways climate change might affect your health
A new NZ report helps show why climate change is the world's major looming health risk, reports Eloise Gibson
Read more here


Text messages provide support for people with diabetes
An innovative University of Auckland trial using text messages has proven a success in getting people to manage their diabetes better.
Read more here


Budget 2018: What you need to know about the health boost
Free doctors visits are being extended to 13-year-olds and the Government has moved to make GP visits for the poorest up to $30 cheaper.
Read more here

Cheaper GP visits will need publicity - medical centre
There will have to be a lot of publicity to make sure low-income earners know about cheaper doctor visits, a Wellington health centre is warning.
Read more here

2018 Budget: GPs fear extra pressure with cheap doctor's visits
Cheaper doctor visits for more than 600,000 New Zealanders mark a win for health, but a sector leader warns it could put GPs under increased strain.From December 1, free GP visits and prescriptions will be extended to all children under 14, up from under 13s, along with cheaper rates for Community Service Card users.
Read more here


NZ babies in study that showed waiting a minute can save premature babies’ lives
A major international study that involved 312 babies from Aotearoa New Zealand has led to life-saving changes in the care of premature babies around the world.
Read more here


Obesity a tough topic for GPs, Otago research reveals
New University of Otago research highlights the difficulties for GPs of discussing obesity with patients who are overweight and signals the need for resources to support them and other community health providers in this role.
Read more here


How many NZ adults can't afford to visit a GP? 
Women were more likely than men not to visit a GP because of cost last year.
According to the Ministry of Health, 23.9 per cent of women living in most deprived areas couldn't afford it, while 15 per cent of men living in similar areas did not visit the GP because of cost. 
Read more here


The erosion of rural healthcare in the south
Is there still a heart left in health care these days? With services changing all the time, what are southern communities left with when it comes to modern health care? Eugene Bonthuys reports.
Rural healthcare in the south is being eroded away, suffering death by a thousand cuts. 
Read more here

Rural health workforce reaching crisis point
The rural health workforce is at crisis point, with more than 40 percent of country doctors due to retire in the next five years.
Read more here


Being cold and rationing heating is now 'normal' in New Zealand
Turning off the heating and going cold in winter is now a majority sport in New Zealand.Just over half of New Zealand households cut back on heating their homes in winter due to the cost, a survey of nearly 1300 householders by Credit Simple found.
Read more here


Regional IT system connects health services across the Top of the South
Nelson Marlborough Health (NMH) has launched a regional IT system that will seamlessly connect patient information across all its health services for the first time.
Read more here

South Island patient administration system travels to the top of the south 
Nelson Marlborough Health has become the second South Island district health board (DHB) to move onto SI PICS, the South Island Patient Administration Care System. The move is part of a South Island Alliance initiative to streamline patient care throughout the region through the use of a single patient administration system.
Read more here

Telehealth a Clot-Busting Game-Changer for Kiwi Stroke Patients
The chance of patients avoiding permanent brain damage or disability from stroke looks set to dramatically improve, thanks to the success of a New Zealand hospital telehealth pilot now being progressively rolled out nationwide.
Read more here

Digital workflow helps staff optimise operating theatre use
In 2013, Christchurch Hospital introduced new software called ScOPe, originally designed to replace paperwork for surgical staff
Read more here

Technology enables a new model of care at Midlands practices
A new model of care involving patients getting GP advice over the phone and email at some Midland general practices has resulted in 20 per cent fewer avoidable hospital admissions, a new report shows.
Read more here


Warning labels on alcohol containers highly deficient, new research shows
Current health warning labels on alcohol beverage containers in New Zealand are highly deficient, new research from the University of Otago, Wellington shows.
Read more here

NZ Alcohol Beverages Council says education is the answer, not labels
Researchers are calling for compulsory labelling on alcohol bottles to help people understand the major health risks of drinking their favourite tipple.
Read more here


Nurse practitioners stepping up as demand for doctors outpaces supply
NPs have the training beyond registered nurses to diagnose patients, order tests, prescribe drugs, stitch wounds, and perform most tasks traditionally ascribed to family doctors.
Read more here

How skilled nursing facilities are using virtual reality to enhance resident stays
Virtual reality, a technological wonder rarely associated with use by the Silent or Baby Boomer generation. Despite being the fastest growing demographic in our country right now, the elderly are often the most overlooked when it comes to new technology being introduced to the market, which is a miscalculation.
Read more here

Nurse Overtime Harms Professional Collaboration
After 1 hour of overtime, nurse-to-nurse collaboration drops significantly
Read more here


Acute care nurses’ perceptions of electronic health record use: A mixed method study
Gillian Strudwick,  Linda McGillis Hall,  Lynn Nagle,  Patricia Trbovich
AimThe overall aim of this study is to examine nurses’ perceptions of electronic health record use in an acute care hospital setting.
This study uses a sequential mixed methods design in two phases.
Read more here

Overseas Qualified Nurses’ (OQNs) perspectives and experiences of intraprofessional and nurse-patient communication through a Community of Practice lens
Collegian, Article in press, May
Overseas qualified nurses enter their new workplaces as experienced newcomers, who are challenged by unfamiliar patterns of communication with patients and colleagues. Little is known of the relational dimension of these nurses’ adjustment to unfamiliar communication norms.
This paper explores the barriers and enablers of clinical communication experiences of OQNs from their perspective using a Communities of Practice framework.
Read more here


New report aims to make general practice nursing a top career destination
Improving training available in GP practice settings and raising the profile of the role is key to helping to retain and expand the general practice nursing workforce, says a new report published today by Health Education England (HEE).
Read more here

The above information has been collated for the College of Nurses Aotearoa (NZ) Inc by Linda Stopforth, SNIPS and is provided on a weekly basis.  It is current as at Tuesday 22 May 2018

If you have any feedback about content - what parts are most useful or what you would like added - please email

For more up to date news and information follow SNIPS at:

Facebook:  Snips Info

twitter: @SnipsInfo



Back to blog entries

Areas of Interest