News bulletin 24 March

on 24 March

Welcome to the College of Nurses Aotearoa News Update.

No. 536, Wednesday 24 March 2021

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


Concern over loss of services as nurses are drafted in to help Covid-19 vaccination roll-out

School nurses in some areas of New Zealand are being diverted from their students to work for the Covid-19 vaccination programme – triggering fears of unintended pregnancies, more sexually transmitted diseases and untreated mental health conditions.


Otago Polytechnic School of Nursing hosts international nurses

Entitled to enter New Zealand as critical health workers, they are completing an eight-week programme at Otago Polytechnic to complete the ...


Nurse keen for placement after 'difficult' journey

Leaving her husband and 1-year-old son at home has been at times agonising.

But Anjana Maria is thankful to be in New Zealand and keen to get to work in Dunedin.


Taranaki flight nurse clocks up 1000 patient transfers

Flight nurse Hamish Hardy nurse has clocked up 1000 patient transfers in double quick time - in just five busy years aboard the Taranaki Air Ambulance 


Waitemata DHB is set to hire 100 new nurses

The biggest DHB in the country is embarking on its biggest recruitment drive ever, seeking 100 new nurses before the end of June.



Nurses could face regulatory action for spreading COVID-19 anti-vaccination claims

Nurses and other registered health practitioners could be stripped of their ability to practise for promoting COVID-19 anti-vaccination claims that seek to undermine the national vaccine rollout.



Family Court judge orders pre-schooler to be vaccinated despite father's objections

A 4-year-old girl will be vaccinated without her father's approval after a ruling handed down from the Family Court.   


Prevalence of teenage depression more than doubled since the 1980s - study

The prevalence of teenage depression in New Zealand has more than doubled since the 1980s, a new University of Otago-led study reveals.   



Rural health workers declining Covid-19 vaccine due to 'hours of travel'

Some rural doctors and nurses and frontline health workers are turning down their chance of a Covid vaccine because they would have to take hours out of their busy day to get one.


Prisoners among the 1.7 million people to get Covid-19 vaccine from May

Prisoners will be among the 1.7 million people to receive early access to the Covid-19 vaccine, due to concern that Covid-19 can spread quickly through prisons.


Covid-19: Nurses union calls for Govt to establish vaccine programme for Pasifika

The Pacific nursing section of the nurses union says the Government needs a special Covid-19 vaccination programme for Pasifika, while urging the community to accept the vaccine.


Extra support for Pacific health providers to vaccinate

The New Zealand Government is providing a funding boost to Pacific health providers to assist them with the delivery of the COVID-19 vaccination campaign in Pacific communities.


Battle to spread truth about Covid-19 vaccine in Pacific communities

The race is on to reach Pasifika communities to counter the spread of misinformation about the Covid-19 vaccine.


Covid 19 coronavirus: Misplaced fears over risks big factor in vaccine unease

Misplaced worries over vaccine risks in general might help explain why a quarter of Kiwis are unsure about receiving the Covid-19 shot, a new study finds. Read more


COVID-19 Pfizer vaccine: Concerns there won't be enough staff trained for the wider vaccine rollout

New Zealand is due to start the mammoth task of vaccinating the wider ... NZ Nurses Organisation spokesperson Kate Weston says there are a few ...


Covid-19 vaccine: Concerns over future uptake in rural areas

The government is being encouraged to think outside the box when rolling out the Covid-19 vaccine into rural communities.


Covid-19: Officials ponder options for border workers refusing vaccine

Employers and unions are in talks with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) to work out how to manage border workers who refuse a Covid-19 vaccine.


Covid-19: New online tool shows people when they're likely to be vaccinated

An online tool which can help New Zealanders figure out which vaccination group they’re in has been released.   


Substantially higher burden of COVID-19 compared to flu, new research shows

A new study compares the impact of COVID-19 on patients and hospital resources versus the impact of influenza.



Clinical safety a top priority for new SDHB chair

New Southern District Health Board chair Pete Hodgson makes no bones about the fact that there’s no shortage of challenges facing the board, but some of them require urgency, he says.


Waitemata DHB appoints Dr Josephine Aumea Herman as Director of Pacific Health

Former Secretary for Te Marae Ora Cook Islands Ministry of Health Dr Josephine Aumea Herman has been appointed Director of Pacific Health at WaitematÄ DHB.  


Hundreds of surgeries postponed due to staffing issues at Wellington Regional Hospital 

Hundreds of planned surgeries had to be postponed this year because Wellington Regional Hospital did not have enough anaesthetists, with the local health authorities warning shortages remain.



Calls for urgency to address 'avalanche of diabetes' among Pacific community

The enthusiasm the Government has shown to combat the Covid-19 pandemic is needed to fight the current diabetes crisis, a senior Pacific doctor says.  



Emergency departments in 'crisis': Long, painful waits for patients, staff burnt out

A woman who went to Christchurch Hospital’s emergency department (ED) in excruciating pain after a man tripped and fell on her, had to wait almost 10 hours to learn her knee was not broken.



Water fluoridation: Govt proposes law change giving fluoridation decisions to director-general of Health

The Government is proposing a law change giving director-general of Health Ashley Bloomfield oversight for all decisions on fluoridating water supplies.



Cost barriers for smear tests and birth control 'disgusting for women's health'

New limits on free cervical screening, contraception and physiotherapy will result in more unintended pregnancies, chronic pain and missed pre-cancer diagnoses, Christchurch health professionals say.


New Waikato Hospital training course to expand endometriosis care

Waikato Hospital’s Women’s Health Service is establishing a Gynaecological Centre of Excellence which aims to improve the care and wellbeing of women across the Midland region.



18 Mar 2021 - Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Bill

Public submissions are now being invited on this Bill



Mā Te Rongo Ake / Through Listening and Hearing

A report from the Initial Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission to the Minister of Health

Mā Te Rongo Ake is a report from the Initial Commission that assesses progress of the Government’s response to He Ara Oranga, the inquiry into mental health and addiction, addresses the question: “how is system transformation progressing?”, and asks:

  • what progress is government making in its response to He Ara Oranga?
  • is progress happening fast enough (and how much further is there to go)?
  • what areas need further focus or priority?



Towards a better understanding of the relationship between feedback and nurses’ work engagement and burnout: A convergent mixed-methods study on nurses’ attributions about the ‘why’ of feedback,

A.P.M. (Suzanne) Giesbers, Roel L.J. Schouteten, Erik Poutsma, Beatrice I.J.M. van der Heijden, Theo van Achterberg,

International Journal of Nursing Studies, Volume 117, 2021, 103889,

ISSN 0020-7489,

Previous studies on the effects of providing feedback about quality improvement measures to nurses show mixed results and the factors explaining the variance in effects are not yet well-understood. One of the factors that could explain the variance in outcomes is how nurses perceive the feedback. It is not the feedback per se that influences nurses, and consequently their performance, but rather the way the feedback is perceived.  Read more


Communicating COVID-19 health information to culturally and linguistically diverse communities: insights from a participatory research collaboration.

Wild A, Kunstler B, Goodwin D, Onyala S, Zhang L, Kufi M, Salim W, Musse F, Mohideen M, Asthana M, Al-Khafaji M, Geronimo MA, Coase D, Chew E, Micallef E, Skouteris H.

Public Health Res Pract. 2021;31(1):e3112105.

Objective: To consider the challenges of communicating COVID-19 directives to culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) communities in Australia, and present evidence-based solutions to influence policy and practice on promoting relevant health behaviours; to advance participatory research methodologies for health behaviour change.


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 23 March 2021

 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