News bulletin 18 November

on 18 November

Welcome to the College of Nurses Aotearoa News Update.

No. 521, Wednesday 18 November 2020

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


Diabetes Nurses Celebrated For World Diabetes Day

Diabetes New Zealand CEO Heather Verry says diabetes nurses are critical not only in treating diabetes and ongoing diabetes management, but also ...


Nursing Union Right To Encourage Nurses Not To Work In Unsafe New Zealand Quarantine ...

As a union the New Zealand Nurses Organisation (NZNO) is taking a strong line on what it has concluded to be serious health and safety risks for ...


Coronavirus: Nurse at MIQ facility says no access to N-95 masks puts NZ at risk of another ...

A nurse with 20 years experience on the job - who is now working in managed isolation - says it's unacceptable that health workers ...



Patient-facing NHS nurses to receive twice-weekly home Covid-19 tests

Mr Hunt described the latest update as “fantastic news”. He reiterated that the committee had been “pressing the government since the summer” on this ...

Wearable exoskeletons could reduce physical strain in nurses

Journal reference: Turja, T., et al. (2020) Intention to Use Exoskeletons in Geriatric Care Work: Need for Ergonomic and Social Design.


COVID-19-positive nurses in North Dakota get OK to keep working amid staffing shortage

Healthcare workers in North Dakota with asymptomatic COVID-19 cases can continue working in COVID-19 hospital units and nursing homes, reports Forum News Service.  


Success of mass COVID-19 vaccination programmes will depend on frontline nurses and nurse leaders at the highest level of government

International Council of Nurses (ICN) calls on governments to ensure nursing leaders are at the heart of the planning and delivery of any proposed mass vaccination programmes. This will safeguard the equitable and effective distribution and administration of vaccines, once they are available.



The Harsh Reality Of Dementia In New Zealand

Rapidly growing numbers of New Zealanders living with dementia threaten to overwhelm our health system unless government acts quickly, Alzheimers NZ has said in its Briefing to the Incoming Minister of Health. Read more



Antibiotic resistance makes infections harder to treat - Ministry of Health

The Ministry of Health is supporting World Antimicrobial Awareness Week starting tomorrow (18 - 24 November 2020) by helping health professionals educate New Zealanders about the use of antimicrobial medicines.



Govt planning under way for rollout of a Covid-19 vaccine

The government has purchased several bulk freezers for storing a coronavirus vaccine after news one could be ready next year.


Covid-19 vaccines could go to children first to protect the elderly

The World Health Organisation is discussing how best to allocate and prioritise Covid-19 vaccines when they arrive.


Covid-19 vaccine: Some unknowns and distribution a challenge

It's unclear how long the protective effect of the Covid vaccine which could be available in the country next year will last, a New Zealand scientist says.


Canterbury research could save thousands of lives as Covid-19 resurges globally

An inexpensive Canterbury gadget could help thousands of people around the world recover from Covid-19.


Covid-19: Is the coronavirus getting less deadly or is treatment getting better?

When the dreaded second wave of coronavirus hit Italy, doctors noticed something odd. Cases were climbing again but deaths weren’t– at least not in the numbers expected. On average, patients fronting up to hospitals didn't seem as sick as those that had arrived months earlier. And they were younger.


Diabetes Increasing COVID Risks, Showing Need To Strengthen Health Systems

As the number of people with diabetes surges, many are at “increased risk of severe disease and death from COVID-19”, the UN chief said in his message for World Diabetes Day, on Saturday.


Smell and taste changes provide early indication of COVID-19 community spread

Self-reports of smell and taste changes provide earlier markers of the spread of infection of SARS-CoV-2 than current governmental indicators, according to an international team of researchers. The researchers also observed a decline in self-reports of smell and taste changes as early as five days after lockdown enforcement, with faster declines reported in countries that adopted the most stringent lockdown measures.


Doctors, nurses in COVID-19 epicenter aided by proactive personality

Management scholars generally agree that being proactive at work yields positive outcomes. Studies show proactive—as compared to reactive—people tend to perform at higher levels. Read more


Life after COVID hospitalization: Study shows major lasting effects on health, work and more

Outcomes for COVID-19 patients two months after a stay in one of 38 Michigan hospitals include high rates of death, rehospitalization, lingering health issues and problems with work and finances.



Health Minister Andrew Little promises to cull number of DHBs ahead of suggested timeframe

New Zealand's new health minister Andrew Little has promised to slash the number of district health boards across the country ahead of the suggested five-year timeframe.

Little says he can get it done within two years, possibly even 18 months.


West Coast Māori medical attendance spikes with follow-up calls

The number of Māori patients who fail to show up for outpatient clinics on the West Coast has dropped to a historic low as a result of what staff say is an "embarrassingly simple" intervention.


DHB launches legal action against council over poorly built hospital

Wairarapa DHB has launched legal action against Masterton District Council, claiming the council failed to properly assess the construction of the new $30 million Wairarapa Hospital before signing off on the build.


Boom in $100k-plus salaries at cash-strapped Canterbury health board

The number of Canterbury health board managers and administrative staff earning more than $100,000 has ballooned by 350 per cent in the past nine years.



A few kilograms weight loss nearly halves the risk of diabetes

Losing a few kilograms in weight almost halves people's risk of developing Type 2 diabetes - according to a large scale research study. The research shows how providing support to help people with prediabetes make small changes to their lifestyle, diet and physical activity can almost halve the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. The findings come from the largest diabetes prevention research study in the world in the last 30 years. The clinical trial involved >1,000 people with prediabetes.


Study suggests greater social support linked to lower diabetes distress

New research reveals a perceived lack of support from family and friends affects a patient's ability to manage type 2 diabetes, according to a study published in The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association. Among vulnerable populations, the necessary modifications to daily lifestyle can be difficult to maintain without adequate social support, leading to diabetes-related distress that derails treatment.


Māori diabetes patients missing out on key medicine – Expert Reaction

Māori patients receive fewer prescriptions for common diabetes medication Metformin than non-Māori patients, and may have worse health as a result, according to New Zealand research.

The researchers studied prescriptions from doctors, dispensing by pharmacies, and a marker of blood sugar levels over time. The results from over 1,500 patients in the Waikato region revealed that Māori received fewer prescriptions than non-Māori, and their blood sugar levels were worse on average.

 The SMC asked experts to comment on the research.



Dangerous ED crowding cannot be blamed on 'GP-type' patients alone - ACEM

The Australasian College for Emergency Medicine (ACEM; the College) has concerns about media reports today suggesting patients unable to access GP appointments are the major cause of dangerous crowding and capacity issues facing New Zealand emergency departments (EDs).


Primary care costs push emergency departments to breaking point - ASMA

The Association of Salaried Medical Specialists says the costs and waiting times to see a GP are helping push emergency departments to breaking point.



Report Finds That Whānau Ora Contributed To Recovery Of Whānau Initiatives Impacted By COVID-19

A new report demonstrates that Whānau Ora investment in flaxroots whānau infrastructure provides an important foundation for recovery.


Sport NZ launches $7 million plan to improve Maori wellbeing

Sport NZ Ihi Aotearoa has announced $7m of new investment over the next four years to improve wellbeing outcomes for MÄori. This new plan will see the government agency invest in new organisations who contribute to MÄori physical activity outcomes. It is part of the $265m sport recovery package and recognition of the adverse effect COVID-19 has had on Māori wellbeing and levels of physical activity.



Overcrowded NICUs spending millions on extra staff and flying mums to spare beds

Overcrowded units caring for New Zealand's sickest newborns are blowing their budgets by the millions to staff extra cots and fly mothers and babies to other centres.




Northland GP Dr Tim Malloy predicts primary care breakdown if pay parity left unresolved

A prominent Northland GP is predicting primary healthcare will fail, putting people's health at risk, if nurses' pay parity is not established soon.


Rural GP Publishes Comic About Vaccination To Counter Growing Anti-Vac Movement

Seeing vaccination rates drop around the world and outbreaks of diseases such as measles resurging, concerned Canterbury GP Richard Clinghan wanted to find a way to educate children and parents about the importance of vaccination. The result is a comic titled Jenny & the Eddies, a whimsical allegory about vaccines and viruses he hopes will help stop the spread of misinformation, mitigate concerns and ultimately save lives.  Read more



Researchers urge healthcare providers to routinely ask patients about cannabis use

Nurses and other healthcare providers should talk to patients about their cannabis use the same way they talk about other habits like smoking and drinking: routinely and without judgment. 



A new Privacy Act

A new privacy act means you need to act on 1 December 2020, New Zealand's updated Privacy Act comes into force.  Here's what you need to know to prepare for the changes.

The world in 2020 is almost unrecognisable when compared to 1993 when the first Privacy Act was passed



Consultation on Nursing Education Standards

Nursing Council of New Zealand

Nursing education standards for programmes leading to registration as a registered nurse. Tēnā koutou katoa, We have opened a consultation on our ...



An interview with nurse and multi-disciplinary researcher Dr Ruth De Souza

A mental health clinician, tertiary nursing educator, and currently, a multi-disciplinary researcher looking at everything from cultural safety in workplaces through to new technologies, Dr Ruth De Souza has led a long and industrious career.  Read more


Program supports nurses in caring for people with dementia living in aged care or community who experience changed behaviours

Antipsychotics and benzodiazepines have a limited role in the management of people with dementia who experience changed behaviours such as aggression or agitation and should not be used as the first line of treatment, according to a new national educational program being rolled out by NPS MedicineWise.


Impact of transition programmes for students and new graduate nurses on workplace bullying, violence, stress and resilience: a scoping review protocol

Alshawush KA, Hallett N, Bradbury-Jones C

BMJ Open 2020;10:e038893. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2020-038893

Introduction The shortage of nurses is projected to grow, and the number of new graduate nurses (NGNs) who are predicted to replace expert nurses has increased. Meanwhile, those NGNs leaving their job within the first year, give various reasons for leaving, including workplace bullying and violence. In response, some hospitals and universities have developed nurse transition programmes such as nurse residency programmes and nurse internship programmes to attract NGNs and to assist in their changing status from education to practice. Although these programmes have been successful in decreasing the turnover rate for new nurses and are cost-effective, their impact on workplace bullying and violence has not been systematically reviewed and is yet to be determined. A scoping review will be conducted to address this gap. The aim is to identify current knowledge regarding the content of transition programmes and their impact in supporting NGNs dealing with workplace violence, bullying and stress


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 of 17 November  2020


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