News bulletin 12 September 2018

on 12 September

Welcome to the College of Nurses Aotearoa News Update.
No. 414, Wednesday 12 September 2018


Nurses pay and staffing deal - hospital crisis averted?
The country's 55,000 practising nurses have emerged from a major row over pay and staffing that resulted in a multimillion-dollar deal and a commitment to better staffing long term.  But what sort of pressures are they really facing? Karen Brown spent time in a ward in Auckland City Hospital for Insight to find out more.
Read more here

Aged care sector warns 'we're now at crisis' as nurses leave for DHBs
The flow of nurses leaving the aged care sector has gone from a trickle to a torrent, an industry body claims.  In August, nurses working for district health boards (DHBs) voted to accept a new collective agreement with pay rises of at least 9 per cent.
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Southland nurse recognized for contribution to service
Aylah Fisher has become the first nurse in Southland to receive the Te Runanga O Aotearoa service award.The award, which is given by the New Zealand Nurses Organisation, is given in acknowledgement of service to the Maori community. 
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Extra pay for RN prescribers sought in primary health MECA
Two years since registered nurse prescribing regulations came into force, there are now more than 200 and extra pay recognition is being sought for the extended role.
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Families to lose out with Plunket changes - nurses
Nurses are warning changes to Plunket services in Auckland will cut clinics or clinic time for many babies.
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Nurses fill in for midwives as staffing shortage deepens
Palmerston North Hospital's appointment of registered nurses to fill midwifery vacancies is described by the College of Midwives as a stop-gap that cannot be a long-term solution.
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Hospital security staff get camera vests at Waitemata DHB after nurse strangled and staff assaults
Security staff at Waitemata District Health Board are being issued camera vests after a surge in reported violence including a nurse being strangled and staff members being punched in the face and one needing surgery after an assault.
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Māori health: 'We have to be talking about racism'
Health experts are calling for frank and fearless discussions about racism and white privilege to improve Māori health.
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Northland selected as a model for medical research
The future of increased health research programmes based in Northland, targeted to the region's specific needs looks more promising, thanks to an initiative from the Northland DHB and the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of Auckland.
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High-tech aged care rest home to use tablets, nurse communication badges
A new rest home is planning to be the first in New Zealand to use an iPad-style tablet to connect residents with family and nurse staff at the touch of a button, allowing them to order dinner, watch TV and make phone calls.
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How overmedication is injuring and killing our elderly - study
Elderly taking multiple high-risk medications for sleeping, pain or incontinence are twice as likely as others to fall and break bones, with many dying within a year of their injury, new research shows.
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More green, less asthma, NZ study finds
A new study using "uniquely rich" New Zealand databases has found a strong link between greenness and asthma.
"Exposure to greenness was associated with a significantly lower risk of developing asthma," concluded the paper's authors, led by Dr Geoffrey Donovan of the US Forest Service in Portland, Oregon.
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South Auckland hospital boss criticises lack of diversity in bowel screening material
Counties Manukau DHB staff are disappointed at the lack of resources to encourage Māori and Pasifika communities to get bowel cancer checks.
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New Zealand falling behind in breast cancer treatment - report
Patients with advanced breast cancer in New Zealand are dying twice as fast as those in comparable countries.
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'No reason why NZ women shouldn't expect the same quality of life' - Aus Oncologist
An Australian oncologist says there is no reason why New Zealand women with advanced stages of breast cancer should have shorter survival rates and lower quality of life than their Australian counterparts.
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Technology platform ensures vulnerable children get health checks
The National Child Health Information Platform is being used to help locate vulnerable children and ensure they get appropriate health checks.
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Major report on economic cost of Arthritis in NZ
A major report on the economic cost of Arthritis in New Zealand will be launched in parliament on Wednesday September 5th by Arthritis New Zealand. The findings in the report have major implications for how arthritis is managed in the health system. In particular, it shows that arthritis is a growing health issue for people of working age and it also has a significant impact on Māori and Pacific.
Read more here


$200,000 funding pool available for charities focused on improving the health and wellbeing of Auckland’s diverse population
Registered charities in the greater Auckland region that have a focus on health equity, alleviating the symptoms of poverty, and increasing community health and wellbeing through education or other services are invited to apply for grants of $20,000 or more from the ProCare Charitable Foundation 2018 funding allocation.
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Doctor estimates thousands are dying of sepsis every year
It was all Paige Nicholson could do to keep her eyes open as she rang her dad and said "GP, now."A sudden fever and shaking struck the 25-year-old Waikato nurse one night in early July, and by the next day, she knew she urgently needed help.
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BOP mental health director resigns after damming report into culture
A damning report into the Bay of Plenty Mental Health and Addictions Services preceded a resignation from the clinical director. 
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Victims of partner violence see death as an escape: report
Horrific accounts of savage physical and psychological abuse have shocked Women's Refuge, who say intimate partner violence is driving victims to suicide and self-harm.
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NZ's record high suicide numbers prove need for action, says health minister
WARNING: This article is about suicide and may be distressing for some readers.New Zealand's latest "upsetting" suicide statistics underscore the Government's efforts to confront the issue, Health Minister David Clark says.
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Wairarapa GP shortage sees health centres close books to new patients
When Andrew Cawston and his family recently moved to Wairarapa from Auckland the last thing they expected was a struggle finding a doctor. While he was accepted at Masterton Medical in July, his wife Sharon and son John have since been turned away.
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Time to Acknowledge Family Violence as a Health Issue
Aviva welcomes the findings of a report released today by Women’s Refuge that emphatically demonstrates, in the words of women themselves, the significance of family violence as a mental and physical health issue in New Zealand, and calls for the Ministry of Health to acknowledge it as such.
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Rising power prices pushing Kiwi households into power poverty
More than 100,000 New Zealand households spend more than 10 per cent of their income on their electricity bills, a new report says.
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Fentanyl found in drug testing: 'This stuff is deadly, it is cheap'
The strong opioid fentanyl has been found in New Zealand's workplace drug testing and wastewater.
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Research reveals potential for reducing tobacco availability
Changing the way tobacco is sold is a crucial step in achieving the Government’s 2025 smokefree goal, new University of Otago research suggests.  If the Government prevented new retail outlets from selling tobacco, while allowing existing retailers to continue selling tobacco until they closed or relocated, it could achieve a 50 per cent reduction in tobacco outlets by 2032, the research just published in medical journal Tobacco Control shows.
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Mass. Law On ICU Nurse Staffing Ratios Has Had Little Effect Since 2016, Study Finds
new study concludes that state-mandated nurse staffing ratios for intensive-care patients have had little effect on mortality or complications.
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A nursing perspective on the opioid crisis
Addictions nursing specialists have a unique role to play in caring for patients, families, and communities affected by the crisis. A series of original research and expert commentaries provide the nursing specialist's perspective on the opioid crisis, appearing in the July/September special issue of Journal of Addictions Nursing (JAN), the official journal of the International Nurses Society on Addictions (IntNSA).
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Prescribing Controlled Drugs in Addiction Treatment 2018: Guidance for nurse practitioners, designated prescriber nurses and designated prescriber pharmacists
This new guidance document outlines the roles and responsibilities specific to nurse practitioners, designated prescriber nurses and designated prescriber pharmacists who are prescribing. It also covers any deviations from the 2014 guidelines.
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Evaluation of the Implementation of the Varicella Vaccine Introduction
The evaluation concluded that communication and education/training to the health sector and the public exceeded expectations, and performance on all other criteria met expectations.
Several recommendations were made:

  • to continue our current approach to education, training and resources
  • clarify expectations around using two vaccinators and splitting vaccines
  • continue to monitor varicella vaccine coverage
  • reinforce messaging around cold chain updates
  • communicate more frequently with PMS providers as they develop updates in response to future NIS changes. 

The Ministry is incorporating these recommendations in its planning for future changes to the NIS.
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 11 September 2018

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