News bulletin 4 December

on 4 December

Welcome to the College of Nurses – News Update.
No. 181, Wednesday 4 December 2013 

From NZ media this week

Nurse 'over the moon' at scooping $10,000 prize
A personal health service record and communications tool for older people won the top prize of the Southern Innovation Challenge in Dunedin yesterday.

More nursing staff work at 'front line'
The South Canterbury District Health Board has benefited from 30 extra nurses and midwives since 2008.Of the extra nurses, 2.2 fulltime equivalents are community nurses working in people's homes and the remainder are at Timaru Hospital. 

Hospital scheme gets global attention 
Whanganui District Health Board's approach to dealing with the families of patients who die in Wanganui Hospital received international attention recently. WDHB's director of nursing, Sandy Blake, attended the 30th International Society for Quality in Health Care conference in Scotland, where she discussed how the DHB meets and communicates with the families of deceased patients.

Bill’s amendment ‘good news’ for rural communities

The passing of the Medicines Amendment Bill allowing Nurse Practitioners to be authorised prescribers within their scope of practice is appropriate recognition of their skills and training, and good news for patients in rural communities, the New Zealand Rural General Practice Network says.

Rural nurses to prescribe medication next year

Rural health representatives are welcoming a law change that will allow nurses more freedom to prescribe medication next year. 

Funding for hiring doctors

The Government has had to step in and pay District Health Boards to take on graduate doctors after 24 were found to be "surplus to requirements", the Nurses Organisation says. 

Nurses say hospitals paid to take new doctors

Nurses claim a group within the Ministry of Health has paid district health boards to provide jobs for all new graduate doctors while hundreds of new nurses struggle to find work. 

Complete lack of health workforce planning a disaster for health system
The New Zealand Nurses Organisation (NZNO) has learned that the reason why all first year graduate doctors have found positions is because the Government has paid hospitals to take them. This year 24 new doctors were “surplus to requirements” until the Government stepped in; next year the number is expected to rise to 60. 

"Health Bosses put Propaganda before Patients; kick doctors and nurses in the teeth"
"Health bosses running Southern District Health Board are putting their need for propaganda before patients," said Mr Ian Powell, Executive Director of the Association of Salaried Medical Specialists, today.

 DHB news 

Migrants 'clogging' hospital
Christchurch Hospital's emergency department (ED) is the busiest it has ever been and foreign rebuild workers have been pinpointed as the likely main cause. 

Doctors merging under South Link Health roof

Invercargill's Don St will soon be home to the city's largest multi-functional medical centre. 

Health staff given details of $15m cost-cutting
All Southern District Health Board staff have been sent a report showing the organisation's progress in saving more than $15 million in health services. 

Public health

Online therapy tool to help people with pot

An innovative online therapy to help people reduce or stop their use of cannabis was launched today in Auckland.

Risk-taking young people need better health services

Comprehensive health assessments and supports need to be more widely available for young people attending secondary schools in New Zealand, according to a new study.

Report: Women drinking more and increasing health risks

A new report on women and alcohol confirms that New Zealand women are drinking more like men and that young women are consuming more than older women. And while the overall prevalence of drinking among young women and girls at high school has decreased markedly, heavy drinking and the amount consumed at a session has risen.

International media

Social media and patient privacy - a nurse leader's investigation (Aus)

Nurses and midwives are overwhelming embracing social media to share information but when does posting and tweeting breach patient privacy? One of Australia’s emerging nurse leaders put nurses’ use of social media under the microscope – and she was alarmed at what she found, writes Karen Keast. 

For nurses, hospital jobs harder to come by (US)
Lily Bush spends dozens of hours a week learning how to dispense medications, draw blood, dress wounds, become an expert in anatomy, deal with family members and the hundreds of other skills a registered nurse is supposed to master. 

Nursing students being turned away amid faculty shortage in Cal State system (US)
A need for more nurses across the state has been compounded by the lack of faculty to train students looking to enter the field, according to officials in the Cal State University system. 

More nursing and allied health university places (Aus)
An extra 1515 postgraduate nursing and allied health places will be created in the next four years to support Australia’s ageing population. 

Social media

Susanne Gordon : A Nurse Acts and Moves From Silence to Voice
The other day I had the privilege of being interviewed for a podcast by RN Suzie Farthing.  Suzie took the initiative to do her own series of podcasts on healthcare and nursing.  She’s a model for all nurses and those in healthcare who have something to say and decide to say it, and who also act to help others find their voices.- See more at:

Health and wellness

Cancer warning for shift workers

Burning the midnight oil increases the risk of cancer - and bosses should consider the dangers of shift work alongside other on-the-job health hazards, experts say.

Articles of interest

Ethical Issues: Helping Patients Who Don't Help Themselves
When patients don't follow treatment plans.
Nurses often treat patients who deliberately and persistently act to lessen the efficacy of their treatment. Three such common situations are patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) who smoke, patients with type 2 diabetes who eat too many sweets, and patients with chronic pain who abuse drugs. 

Train-the-Trainer Intervention to Increase Nursing Teamwork and Decrease Missed Nursing Care in Acute Care Patient Units
Nursing Research - Featured Journal
December 2013 
Volume 62  Number 6
Pages 405 - 413
Background: Teamwork is essential for patient safety and results in less missed nursing care.Objectives: The aim of this study was to test the impact of a train-the-trainer intervention on the level of satisfaction with nursing teamwork and the amount of missed nursing care.

Patient-Centered Communication and Health Assessment With Youth
Nursing Research - Featured Journal
December 2013 
Volume 62  Number 6
Pages 383 - 393
Background: Patient-centered communication is fundamental to individualizing healthcare, but there has been limited evaluation of provider communication with youth.Objectives: The aim was to compare communication outcomes after use of an event history calendar (EHC) and Guidelines for Adolescent Preventive Services (GAPS) to structure interactions during a clinic visit. Patient and provider descriptions of EHC and GAPS communication experiences were also obtained.

Publications and Reports online
Nursing and Midwifery Workforce 2012
This report ,release by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare on 29 November 2013, outlines the workforce characteristics of nurses and midwives in 2012. Between 2008 and 2012, the number of nurses and midwives employed in nursing or midwifery increased by 7.5%, from 269,909 to 290,144. During this period, nursing and midwifery supply increased by 0.5%, from 1,117.8 to 1,123.6 full-time equivalent nurses and midwives per 100,000 population. In 2012, the proportion of employed nurses and midwives aged 50 or older was 39.1%, an increase from 35.1% in 2008.

From the Ministry of  Health 

Sharing Health Information: Toward better, safer care

This publication showcases examples of information technology (IT) innovation and use within the health and disability sector. It looks at the increasing use of connected electronic systems which provide clinicians and consumers with relevant information when it is needed at the point of care. 

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 3 December 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
witter: @SnipsInfo

Back to blog entries

Areas of Interest