News bulletin 31 July

on 31 July

Welcome to the College of Nurses – News Update.
No. 164, Wednesday 31 July 2013 

From NZ media this week 

Guiding hand for cancer patients

Waikato cancer patients can look forward improved support following the appointment of four registered nurse co-ordinators and a clinical nurse specialist. 

Mums going home despite $40m hospital welcome
First-time mum the Duchess of Cambridge discharged herself from hospital just a day after giving birth to future king George Alexander Louis last week. But figures released by New Zealand's district health boards show a $40 million government plan to provide for longer post-natal stays has had mixed results. 

Specialists 'too busy' - doctors' union

Stressed hospital staff being micromanaged to meet targets are putting patients' lives at risk, a doctors' union says. 

Battling chronic disease and climate change together

The increase in diseases like diabetes, cancer and asthma poses an enormous threat to populations and health systems around the globe. But a new approach by world-renowned epidemiologist Professor Neil Pearce suggests an alternative – by tackling chronic diseases and climate change at the same time. 

Coca-Cola comes clean on obesity

Drinks giant Coca-Cola will today address New Zealand's obesity problem with a new campaign. 

Earthquakes: Taking care of children
The next few days will be a trying time for many in Wellington, but people are being urged to remember that children in particular need special attention at this time.

Parents blind to kids' fat problem

Some parents in Manawatu are unaware their children are obese and overweight because their own lifestyle choices "cloud their judgment". 

Woman found covered in faeces

A Wellington retirement village is investigating complaints that a patient suffering from Alzheimer's disease and a stroke was found covered in her own faeces three times. 

Synthetic drugs may return in weeks

Legal high producers and retailers are scrambling to get their products back into the market. 

New online resource to help Kiwi communities prevent injuries

Injury Comparison Reports, which provide communities across New Zealand with a comprehensive picture of local injury rates and trends, are now available on ACC’s website. 

DHB specific 

Services expect flood of addicts
A surge of legal high users seeking help from MidCentral Health could hit mental health and addiction services next month as the legal weed mop-up continues. 

Short Term Care For the Elderly Being Undermined By DHBs
Many DHBs are undermining short term elderly respite care by underfunding the service and using the contracts as Trojan horses to force unwelcome contract changes on providers. 

Starship Hospital gets $6m rebuild
Sleeping on the floor is a thing of the past for parents at Starship Hospital's refurbished wards.This weekend the national children’s hospital welcomes patients back into the renovated neurology and medical specialities wards. 

Big Auckland v region difference in kids' fees

High charges raise concerns that parents may not take sick youngsters to see the doctor.

Local children the face of a new family violence prevention billboards

The Whangarei community is making a huge effort to prevent family violence and encourage people to ask for help. The latest tragedy in Kamo, the death of Atreyu Taylor-Matene, reminds us that we all have a role to play in keeping children safe.
Northland DHB in partnership with Whangarei District Council is launching a new series of billboards with a key focus on family violence prevention.

Public health 

Should the public be allowed to know about the health impacts of alcohol?A major report on the effects of alcohol on the health of the New Zealand populations was released last week by the Health Promotion Agency (Alcohol-attributable burden of disease and injury in New Zealand: 2004 and 2007) demonstrating that approximately 800 premature deaths every year in New Zealand are attributable to drinking alcohol. Thirty per cent of those deaths are due to cancers of various kinds. 

Time ripe to address alcohol harm

New legislation offers an opportunity to curb the enormous harm caused by hazardous drinking habits in the south, a medical officer of health says. 

Social health 

GP or groceries - choice no mother wants to make
Mother of four Michelle Gordon delayed taking her teenage daughter to the doctor for a fortnight as she was unsure how badly she needed help, and because it costs $25. 

Lower GP fees, say parties
Doctors' fees for many school-aged children are too high, say Opposition parties which want more taxpayer money spent on bringing them down. 

Call for plan on ageing Kiwis

Councils are trying to fire up a national debate as many parts of the country face the grim prospect of growing elderly populations and fewer young workers. 

Mental health 

Children struggling with eating disorders
More boys are developing eating disorders, and children as young as 9 are being admitted to hospital with anorexia. 

Alarm over depression therapy cuts
Psychotherapists anxious as Govt, insurers redirect funds for depression

 International media 

Liverpool care pathway review shows challenges in palliative care

Findings illustrate failures of training around the regime and that it leads to poor practice for terminally ill patients 

Electronic health records shown to help stop preventable disease

Researchers from Columbia University School of Nursing released findings on Thursday that show the use of electronic health records helped fight vaccine-preventable diseases by giving a broader array of information to medical professionals. 

Informatics nurse leader contributes to book on executive leadership
Kansas City area nurse leader Roy Simpson was one of nine contributors in a book released this spring, “Claiming the Corner Office – Executive Leadership Lessons for Nurses” by Connie Curran and Therese Fitzpatrick. 

Researchers Identify 146 Contemporary Medical Practices Offering No Net Benefits
While there is an expectation that newer medical practices improve the standard of care, the history of medicine reveals many instances in which this has not been the case. Reversal of established medical practice occurs when new studies contradict current practice.  Reporters may remember hormone replacement therapy as an example of medical reversal.  A new analysis published in Mayo Clinic Proceedingsdocuments 146 contemporary medical practices that have subsequently been reversed. 

Thousands gather at nurses rally amid state wide strike

Five thousand nurses and midwives across the state have vowed they will continue their campaign to get improved staff to patient ratios. 

Statement: Safe staffing key to quality healthcare
An appropriate number of nurses and other staff should be available at all times across the continuum of care, with a mix of education, skills and experience to ensure patient care needs are met and working conditions stay hazard-free, according to a policy statement on safe staffing levels released July 15 by the International Centre for Human Resources in Nursing in Geneva, Switzerland. 

Opt-out organ donation in Wales: a model for Australia?
The National Assembly of Wales has legislated to introduce an 'opt-out' system for human organ and tissue transplantation, which will come into effect in 2015. In doing so, Wales joins a host of other countries (now over 24) that have taken the leap, including Spain, Austria, Belgium and Singapore. 

University of Tasmania study finds strong sedatives prescribed at high rate in nursing homes
Australian researchers say they are alarmed by the number of nursing home residents who are being prescribed strong sedatives. 

Boomer Sex With Dementia Foreshadowed in Nursing Home

At 8:30 p.m. on Christmas Day 2009, nurse Tiffany Gourley was called to a room at theWindmill Manor nursing home in Coralville, Iowa. She found a 78-year-old male resident whohad just had intercourse with an 87-year-old woman. The man, a former college professor, was divorced. The woman, a retired secretary, was married. Both had dementia.What followed illustrates one of the most complex and unexamined issues facing elderly care facilities as the Baby Boom generation enters old age: How to determine if residents with dementia have the mental capacity to consent to sex. 

Pharmacies employ nurses to fill health care gaps (Aus)
Pharmacists are employing nurses to provide maternal and child health care in a market-driven response to gaps in the public sector, according to the results of a new study. 

Periop nurses strive to make handoffs safer, more efficient

Well-executed handoffs are especially critical before, during and after surgery, when nurses and healthcare providers make patient care decisions quickly and move patients to different care units throughout the hospital. 

Hospitals bringing asthma attack prevention into the home

Children's hospitals across the region are sending workers into patients' homes to help save kids from frightening — and costly — trips to the emergency room. Coaching parents through changes at home may keep wheezing and inflammation at bay when doctors visits and medicine aren't enough. 

Articles of interest 

Achieving Patient and Family Engagement Through the Implementation and Evolution of Advisory Councils Across a Large Health Care System
Over the past decade, hospitals and health care systems have responded to the call for increased patient engagement and person-centered care. Organizations across the country have developed models and tools to assist in the effort toward patient and family engagement in health care delivery. In addition, current literature and trends suggest that patient satisfaction and quality outcomes are improved when patients and families become partners in their own health care and the delivery of that care. However, to formalize a patient-centric structure and process across a large health care system that is aimed at patient and family engagement can be a daunting activity. Utilizing well-established tools, Catholic Health Initiatives was successful in implementing the structures to deploy the ideas of patients and families in multiple facilities and care settings across 19 states. Nursing leaderships, in partnership with patients and their families within this health care delivery system, were the key contributors to the implementation of formalized patient and family advisory councils in hospitals across the enterprise. 

Engaging Patients and Families in System-Level Improvement: A Safety Imperative
Health care organizations have focused considerable effort and resources on improving patient safety and health care quality. Yet, despite these efforts, patients continue to experience harm events within our institutions. Family engagement is a powerful and often untapped resource to improve the quality and safety of organizations. While the value patients and families bring as partners in improving the safety and quality of health care is implicitly recognized, the adoption of structures to actively involve health care consumers has been slow, particularly in organizational or overall system work. Patients and families can stimulate and drive improved health care services through their involvement at the clinical/point of care, policy/design, and governance levels of the organization. For successful implementation, organization leaders must establish family engagement as a system-level priority. Roles to support the development of a family engagement program, methods to evaluate the level of family engagement, and strategies to enhance and sustain family engagement are described. Although there is limited evidence-based knowledge related to the best practices for family engagement, opportunities exist to drive the family engagement agenda at a regional and national level through participation in networks such as the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Partnership for Patients campaign Hospital Engagement Networks. 

Implementing an Organization-Wide Quality Improvement Initiative: Insights From Project Leads, Managers, and Frontline Nurses
With the movement to advance quality care and improve health care outcomes, organizations have increasingly implemented quality improvement (QI) initiatives to meet these requirements. Key to implementation success is the multilevel involvement of frontline clinicians and leadership. To explore the perceptions and experiences of frontline nurses, project leads, and managers associated with an organization-wide initiative aimed at engaging nurses in quality improvement work. To address the aims of this study, a qualitative research approach was used. Two focus groups were conducted with a total of 13 nurse participants, and individual interviews were done with 10 managers and 6 project leads. Emergent themes from the interview data included the following: improving care in a networked approach; driving QI and having a sense of pride; and overcoming challenges. Specifically, our findings elucidate the value of communities of practice and ongoing mentorship for nurses as key strategies to acquire and apply QI knowledge to a QI project on their respective units. Key challenges emerged including workload and time constraints, as well as resistance to change from staff. Our study findings suggest that leaders need to provide learning opportunities and protected time for frontline nurses to participate in QI projects. 

Conferences and seminars 

Smoking Cessation Webinar: “The Barriers and Facilitators to the Implementation of a Smokefree Policy in a Withdrawal Unit”
The monthly Smoking Cessation webinar, presented by BMRI’s Smoking Research Unit, is on Tuesday 30 July 2013 from 2pm sharp (Sydney time).  This month the Guest Speaker is  Louise Ross, Drug & Alcohol counsellor for Sydney & South West Sydney Local Health District, on the topic of:
“The Barriers and Facilitators to the Implementation of a Smokefree Policy in a Withdrawal Unit”
To attend via the Internet, just click on following link:

When entering the meeting, please login as a GUEST with your FULL NAME. Or if there are multiple people viewing, your place of work along with the number of people attending.
You will need a computer with good Internet connection, speakers and Adobe Flash Player (available as a FREE download).
 If you want anyone else to join the meeting, just forward the URL (link above) to them.
Alternatively you can come to the meeting in person at the Brain and Mind Research Institute  Level 5 in the Lecture Theatre at 94 Mallet St, Camperdown 2050.

Suicide Prevention 2013: A Lifespan Perspective 
Early-bird registration is now open for Suicide Prevention 2013: A Lifespan Perspective, a one-day conference to be held in Auckland on World Suicide Prevention DaySeptember 10th, 2013. 
Register online at:
Following the format of last year's Suicide Prevention 2012 conference, organisers have brought together a brilliant selection of New Zealand and international speakers to share recent research, practice and expertise in different areas of suicide prevention. 
The conference theme is "A Lifespan Perspective". 
Speakers will address a range of topics related to this theme, including: 
Suicide in older adults
Suicidal behaviour in adolescence
Suicide prevention in the workforce 
Building community understanding of suicide and suicide prevention
Bereavement and postvention 
Online community support services
Antidepressants and suicide 
Suicide prevention programmes in schools Implementation of the New Zealand Suicide Prevention Action Plan 2013-2016   

The conference website includes more details about the programme, venue, speakers, topics and their biographies.
Early-bird registration is available until 23 August.
Please share this information with anyone you know who might be interested in attending.Suicide Prevention 2013 is organised by researcher Dr Annette Beautrais, and will be hosted with the assistance of the Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand.  

The National Nursing Forum

Welcome to The National Nursing Forum hosted by Australian College of Nursing (ACN).In the centenary year of our national capital we will be convening this must attend event for our members and the broader nursing community
The forum will run from Sunday 20 October until Tuesday 22 October 2013 at the National Convention Centre Canberra. 

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 30 July 2013 
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

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