News bulletin 3 July

on 3 July

Welcome to the College of Nurses – News Update.
No. 160, Wednesday 3 July 2013 

From NZ media this week 

50 new dedicated cancer nurses link up to support patients
Health Minister Tony Ryall has today welcomed four more cancer care nurses appointed as part of the Government's $4 million a year programme to give cancer patients in every district health board dedicated support and coordinated care. 

Anna earns top nursing qualification

After 13 years of hard work and commitment, Anna Reed has reached the highest nursing qualification available - a nurse practitioner. 

Test if child will grow out of asthma: Kiwi first
Parents whose children suffer from asthma may soon be able to predict whether they will be afflicted by the respiratory condition for the rest of their lives. 

Medsafe Warns of the Dangers of Purchasing Medicines over the Internet

Medsafe is warning about the dangers of buying medicines online following a joint Medsafe and Customs crackdown on substandard, illegal or counterfeit medicines. 

Community-based primary health care research collaboration between New Zealand and Canadian researchers
The Health Research Council of New Zealand (HRC) has announced funding for a research collaboration in which New Zealand and Canadian researchers will work together to explore ways to better care for older people with high health needs in the community. 

A healthy rural community for the wealth of the nation
Key health issues facing rural communities were identified and prioritised at the inaugural council meeting of the Rural Health Alliance Aotearoa New Zealand (RHĀNZ), held in Auckland last week. 

Patients face grilling on violence
A programme to tackle the 2400 incidents of family violence every year in Manawatu will meet the issue head on. Hospital patients - especially in the emergency department - should expect to be asked questions about family violence so that more victims can get suppor  

Alarm as cervical screening rates drop
Poor rates for cervical screening in Wanganui are due to women missing appointments to have the tests done 

DHB specific 

Waikato DHB to Introduce Internationally Recognised Ward-Round Regime
As part of an ongoing commitment to patient safety, Waikato DHB will soon implement the internationally recognised ‘Intentional Rounding' process to improve consistency in the way nurses carry out their care regimes. 

Tairawhiti DHB makes falls awareness fun
Health care workers at Tairawhiti District Health Board (DHB) have found novel ways to raise awareness of falls among staff, patients and visitors. 

South Canty docs say no to flu jab

Only a third of its doctors and nurses have been flu vaccinated, South Canterbury District Health Board figures show. 

Health staff not scrubbing up

Southern District Health Board staff don't wash their hands enough, figures show.A quarterly performance survey released by the Health Quality and Safety Commission this week shows staff in the southern health board are falling short of minimum requirements for hand hygiene. 

Hospital's hand hygiene below par

Good hand hygiene comes up short at Timaru Hospital but falls risk assessments and use of perioperative checklists have come up trumps, according to a health report. 

Poor documentation blamed for elderly patient's death
Poor documentation and communication are believed to have led to a 75-year old patient's death in Whangarei Hospital. 

DHB cops blame for man's death

Health and Disability Commissioner Anthony Hill found the failures of orthopaedic and nursing teams were directly attributable to the Northland District Health Board. 

Medicines standardised across hospitals

A new uniform hospital medication list will mean patients will have access to the same medication, no matter where they are in the country. 

DHB 'on the mend' but still on watch list

Nelson Marlborough District Health Board's financial performance has been assessed as "deteriorating" by the National Health Board, but DHB chief executive Chris Fleming says it is on the mend. 

New health data will help drive improvements in patient safety

The publication of new health data will encourage district health boards (DHBs) to consistently put in place steps to improve patient safety, says Professor Alan Merry, Chair of the Health Quality & Safety Commission. 

Overdose inquiry: Hospital's procedures criticised
A teenage girl who died after a massive antidepressant overdose was not admitted to Hutt Hospital's intensive care unit because of a "culture of coping" among hospital staff. 

Hospital staff member denies mocking patient
A hospital staff member has denied pretending to play a violin when she met a victim of botched surgery in a Greymouth supermarket. 

West Coast GP shortages prompt new regime

As Buller and Reefton again face GP shortages, the West Coast District Health Board has employed a Christchurch-based company to help manage its GP practices. 

Public health 

GPs brace for flu onslaught

Waikato medical professionals are gearing up for a big influx of patients, as the cold snap that has gripped the region exploits the population's already weakened resistance to germs.  

Rush for jabs as flu like illness shows sharp rise

The number of flu vaccinations doled out in Wairarapa has shot up as residents prepare for the impending flu season, a local health professional says. 

Whooping cough rates still high
Partners of pregnant women and others living in the same household are now eligible for a free pertussis (whooping cough) vaccination in Waikato as public health officials try to get on top of the epidemic. 

Bugs spread by hospital gloves

Gloves used in hospital wards are often contaminated with bacteria before coming into contact with patients, a University of Otago study has found.   

More Maori immunised
Maori children are being immunised at a higher rate than Pakeha, according to figures released by the Whanganui District Health Board. 

ost expectant parents plan to immunise baby
The Growing up in New Zealand study shows nearly all babies received their six week and three month vaccinations, protecting them from childhood diseases like whooping cough. 

Christian community hits West Coast vaccination rates
The Ministry of Health says it will not adjust immunisation targets for the West Coast, even though the ever-growing Gloriavale Christian Community refuses to immunise its children. 

Ethanol 'akin to asbestos in cancer stakes'

New Zealand's excessive drinking culture is causing cancers with abysmally low survival rates, oncology experts say. 

UC researcher produces film to help fight diabetes among Maori
 A University of Canterbury (UC) researcher has worked with the Maori community in a bid to fight Type 2 diabetes which is a serious health problem for Maori. 

Altered drugs 'place lives in danger'

Synthetic cannabis manufacturers are putting lives in danger as they tweak products to get around bans, a forensic scientist says 

Social health 

 Call to monitor elderly living alone
A Blenheim real estate agent has urged people to look out for their elderly neighbours this winter after she called police to the house of an 84-year-old man with "four days of newspapers" in his letter box. 

Winter cruel for those on tight budgets

'Power is not a luxury, it's a necessity' 

Study reveals link between asthma and damp homes

The world's largest-ever study on the link between damp homes and respiratory illness has prompted calls for the Government to do more to fix the problem. 

The grim truth about elder abuse

In the '70s it may have been flippantly referred to as "granny bashing" but these days the acceptable term is "elder abuse". According to the Ministry of Social Development's "Elder abuse and/or neglect" literature review, "Elder abuse or neglect can be either an act of commission, in which case it is abusive, or an act of omission, in which case it is neglectful, and may be either intentional or unintentional. 

Concerns over mice risk for kids due to cold snap

A rodent problem in the Far North has compounded concerns for poorer families amid the cold snap, as some children are having to sleep on flimsy mattresses on floors instead of beds. 

Horror living conditions in cot death house

A harrowing description of dire living conditions in a Bay of Plenty house where a suspected cot death occurred has been given during a coroner's inquest. 

Family violence report released
Following a review of family violence deaths, the Family Violence Death Review Committee (FVDRC) is recommending developing a multi-agency case management process for high-risk cases of family violence. 

New campaign: For every child a healthy home
Guests at a cross-party breakfast of MPs, officials and community representatives in Parliament this morning, were told there is abundant evidence that the market has failed to deliver the quality or quantity of houses New Zealand needs and there should be cross-party work on a Warrant of Fitness for housing. 

Work and management 

Cultural Fit in the Workplace: How Personality Affects Hiring and Teamwork
People differ in their personalities, attitudes, and values, and an understanding of our individual personality is profoundly important in maximizing our happiness and productivity at work. 

Do You Lead With Your Head, Your Heart or Your Hands?
Do you lead with your head, your heart or your hands? One business experts explains these three leadership styles and helps executives take steps to strengthen their leadership styles. 

Mental health 

Mental Health Screening Tool improves prisoners’ care

It's one year since Corrections introduced a new screening tool to identify prisoners’ mental health needs, leading to improvements in their care. 

High K2 use rate among psych unit patients

One in every eight patients admitted to an acute psychiatric unit had been using the synthetic cannabis K2, an audit published today has found. 

Govt will pay to shift mentally ill into work

Mentally ill people will be moved off state-funded benefits and into work using private employment agencies who will earn hefty fees for the service. 

Thousands of residents still being treated for post-quake stress

Young people are easily getting jobs on the Canterbury rebuild, but thousands of residents are still being treated for post-earthquake stress, the latest Canterbury Wellbeing Index data reveals. 

International media 

Fired nurse says United Hospital trauma care endangers patients

A nurse who worked for United Hospital in St. Paul claimed Thursday that she was fired after she reported shortcomings in the hospital's trauma program that endangered patients. 

Nursing Programs’ Capacity Improving, Students More Diverse, NLN Survey Finds
A long-standing issue of unmet demand for seats in U.S. nursing schools appears to be easing, according to the newly-released National League for Nursing (NLN) Annual Survey of Schools of Nursing. Respondents indicated that education capacity is expanding, with shorter waiting lists for entry into nursing programs. 

CYP nurses urged to raise staffing level concerns

The Royal College of Nursing has called on individual children’s nurses to raise their concerns about safe staffing and skill mix as it sets out minimum staffing levels of registered nurses required for providing health services for babies, children and young people. The RCN says these standards are the minimum essential requirements to deliver safe care. 

Public health RNs satisfied, but face challenges

A new report details the significant challenges facing the public health nursing workforce. 

Nurses on police patrols to deal with mental health cases
Nurses are to go on patrol with four police forces across England to improve responses to mental health emergencies.

ANA Unveils National Standards for Safe Patient Handling and Mobility to Spur Commitment to Culture of Safety
ANA unveiled national standards for safe patient handling and mobility that are designed to infuse a stronger culture of safety in health care work environments and provide a universal foundation for policies, practices, regulations and legislation to protect patients and health care workers from injury. 

Needlestick and sharps injuries bid goes to parliament

The fight for legislation that would force every Australian hospital to introduce safety-engineered medical devices (SEMDs) in a bid to reduce Australia’s needlestick and sharps injuries has gone to Federal Parliament. 

Duty of candour: supporting nursing students in practice

A support service at the University of Southampton has found students have an important role in improving the quality of care 

The move into midwifery prescribing

Recent changes to the way maternity services are provided in Australia have opened the doors to midwives being able to prescribe PBS medicines. As Karen Keast discovered, midwives are heading back to university to gain the necessary qualification in droves. 

Work and management 

Note to Managers: Positivity Matters
Those who lead or manage others have the unique potential to serve as an energizing force within organizations today. With their position and collected experience, they have the ability to influence not only what transpires within our work lives, but how we process those moments. A leader's view of a challenging situation, including the psychological vantage point or "mindset" they bring to bear upon a problem, can affect how we move forward 

Articles of interest 

Advances in endometriosis treatment
Endometriosis is a common problem characterized by abdominal pain, back pain, pain with intercourse, dysfunctional uterine bleeding, and infertility. The cause of endometriosis is not well understood, but advances in treatment have been made. Primary care clinicians are uniquely situated to improve patient outcomes by making informed treatment decisions. 

 Online resources 

Patient Notification ToolkitToolkit
Developing Documents for a Patient Notification
Planning Media and Communication Strategies
Establishing Communication Resources
Best Practices in Conducting Patient Notifications
Word on the Scope/ Acknowledgement
Additional Resources
A Guide to Assist Health Departments and Healthcare Facilities with Conducting a Patient Notification Following Identification of an Infection Control Lapse or Disease Transmission 

SANE Bereavement Guidelines
Best practice in support of family and friends of people with mental illness who have died by suicideThese Guidelines will help your service develop and implement a bereavement policy that will lead to improved support for familyand friends when someone with a mental illness dies by suicide. 

Preventing falls in hospitals - a tool kit for improving quality of care
Fall prevention requires an interdisciplinary approach to care. Some parts of fall prevention care are highly routine; other aspects must be tailored to each patient‘s specific risk profile. No clinician working alone, regardless of how talented, can prevent all falls. Rather, fall prevention requires the active engagement of many individuals, including the multiple disciplines and teams involved in caring for the patient. To accomplish this coordination, high-quality prevention requires an organizational culture and operational practices that promote teamwork and communication, as well as individual expertise. Fall prevention activities also need to be balanced with other considerations, such as minimizing restraints and maintaining patients‘ mobility, to provide the best possible care to the patient. Therefore, improvement in fall prevention requires a system focus to make needed changes.  

Reports online 

Becoming a Culturally Competent Health Care Organization
It is imperative hospitals and health care systems not only understand the diverse patients and communities they serve but the benefits of becoming a culturally competent
organization. This guide describes the benefits, steps and educational techniques of becoming a culturally competent health care organization 

Defining staffing levels for children's and young people's services (PDF 350.2 KB)
Children’s services are becoming increasingly complex, encompassing general and specialist care provision across an age spectrum that extends from neonates to adolescents and young adults. This RCN guidance, which was first produced in 2003 as a result of a Delphi study, has been revised to encompass additional areas of children’s and young people’s services, drawing upon evidence, best practice and the professional judgement of a wide range of practitioners and children’s nurse leaders. The guidance and standards apply to all areas in which infants, children and young people receive care, as well as across all types of services and provision commissioned by the NHS including the acute and community, as well as third sector and independent sector providers. The standards are the minimum essential requirements for all providers of services for babies, children and young people.   

A background report on nurse staffing in children's and young people's health care. (PDF 280.5 KB)
This background report was commissioned by the RCN to contribute to the updating of the RCN publication: Defining staffing levels for children and young people’s services: RCN guidance for clinical professionals and service managers, first published in 2003 and updated in 2012/2013 (publication code 002 172). The report provides a review of available literature relating to staffing child health services from across the UK and evidence from discussion with senior children’s nurses working across a range of general and specialist services in England. Analysis of this evidence has highlighted gaps in the literature and led to a number of recommendations to be included in future guidance. 

Patient safety – handover of care between primary and acute care
Policy review and analysis
The paper includes an international and national literature review and analysis on transitions of care, including the clinical handover of care, between primary / community-based and acute care sectors. This data and evidence are reported and analysed in the context of current and future health care reforms underway in Australia. The aim is to provide an assessment of opportunities for improvements in transitions of care that will result in reduced mortality and morbidity, fewer opportunities for medical errors, improved health outcomes, greater stakeholder involvement, and reduced healthcare costs. The paper makes recommendations about potential policies and strategies and how these might be implemented to improve patient safety during transitions of care.$File/Transitions%20of%20Care%20report%20FINAL%207May13.pdf

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 2 July 2013
If you have any feedback about content - what parts are most useful or what you would like added - please email 

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