News bulletin 22 October

on 22 October


Welcome to the College of Nurses – News Update.
No. 225 Wednesday 22 October 2014

From NZ media this week

Whitireia celebrates ten years of Pacific nursing
Friday this week will see Whitireia celebrating the tenth anniversary of its Bachelor of Nursing Pacific programme

Dunedin ICU Staff Celebrate Patient Safety Milestone
Staff at Dunedin Hospital’s Intensive Care Unit (ICU) are celebrating 1,000 days with no Central Line Associated Bacteraemia (CLAB). CLAB is a blood stream infection caused by central line catheters which can lead to longer hospital stays and associated costs estimated to be between $20,000 and $54,000 (HQSC). Their prevention is vital in the fight against healthcare associated infections and DHBs across the country are working to reduce the occurrence of CLAB.

Head nurse leaves health board post
The Nelson Marlborough District Health Board's director of nursing and midwifery has stepped down following a dispute with management, the Marlborough Express understands.

Call to measure cracks in treatment
New Zealand has a "moral imperative" to better measure how many people fall through the cracks of its healthcare system, a new report says.

Hospital policies improved after fatal falls
Hospital policies have been improved following the deaths of three people at South Island hospitals over a three-year period, a coroner says.

Maori & Pacific Island Children Overrepresented in Paediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) Due to Chickenpox - Study
Maori and Pacific Island children are over represented in admissions to paediatric intensive care in NZ for serious chickenpox complications with an almost threefold and sixfold increase respectively.1 Furthermore, long-term disability, usually neurological damage, were suffered by 31% of the 26 children admitted to paediatric intensive care overall, according to a 10-year study review.1

Haste urged over Pasifika health in NZ
A researcher tracking the health and well-being of Pacific children in New Zealand is urging the Government to act with haste to provide more support.

Heart study aims to end guesswork
Maori and Pasifika people will benefit from research professor says is long overdue

From international media sources this week

Pressure affecting care standards, warn nursing staff
More than half of nurses and midwives say lack of time and resources negatively affects their ability to carry out their role to a high standard, according to a major survey commissioned by unions.

Jeremy Hunt tells nurses 'path to lower cost is the same as the path to safer care'
The NHS would be able to afford more nurses if it could deliver safer care, Jeremy Hunt will tell health service staff today.

National STI Guidelines for GPs and Nurses
Australia’s First National Primary Care Guidelines for Sexually Transmissible Infections (STIs)
After more than two years in the making, the first Australian guidelines for sexually transmissible infections (STI) for use by primary care professionals are now available.


Kiwi nurses undergo extra Ebola management training
Kiwi nurses are undertaking extra training to deal with Ebola if it hits New Zealand.

Ebola: NZ isolation wards on stand-by
Isolation wards at hospitals around the country are on stand-by around the clock in preparation for the possibility of a patient carrying the deadly Ebola virus arriving in the country.

Wellington Hospital prepared for Ebola
Wellington Hospital has confirmed it is one of three designated receiving hospitals for any patient suspected to be carrying the Ebola virus which has killed almost 4500 people to-date.

Hospital 'totally ready' for Ebola
New infectious diseases unit ready to meet deadly challenge
Middlemore Hospital is "totally ready" for an Ebola outbreak, Health Minister Jonathan Coleman said yesterday after visiting the hospital's new infectious diseases biocontainment unit.

Ebola: Kiwis shouldn't be 'overly worried' - PM
Kiwis shouldn't feel "overly worried" about the threat to New Zealand of the deadly disease Ebola, Prime Minister John Key says.

B.C. nurses say province unprepared for Ebola
The discovery of three suspected Ebola cases in Metro Vancouver has exposed a glaring lack of preparation to deal with the disease, according to the B.C. Nurses’ Union.
Read more:

Ebola Has Killed More Than 200 Doctors, Nurses, And Other Healthcare Workers Since June
Ebola has now infected multiple people in America: The first two homegrown cases of Ebola are a pair of nurses who got sick after treating Thomas Duncan, the first person ever diagnosed with Ebola in the United States.

National Nurses Union Calls on Obama to Protect Health Care Workers
The largest professional association of registered nurses in the United States is "deeply concerned" by the spread of Ebola, and is calling on President Obama to invoke his authority to protect health care workers.

Nurses Warn of ‘System Failure’ as Ebola Spreads to US Healthcare Worker
Privatized hospitals not providing proper training and equipment to front line workers, charges country's largest nurses union

Texas nurses: We had no Ebola protocols
Nurses at the Texas hospital where a Liberian Ebola patient died last week complain they were given few rules and little guidance on how to treat the severely ill man, contrary to assertions by US health authorities.

Nurses who fear Ebola have few options: complaining, sick days or walking out
Healthcare workers worried about Ebola can do little. They’re asking for better equipment and training, but beyond that, workplace laws offer them few protections

How are nurses becoming infected with Ebola?
American nurse Nina Pham is the second health worker to contract Ebola outside of West Africa while caring for patients with the virus, despite using personal protective equipment. Authorities were quick to attribute lapses in protocol for Pham’s and Madrid nurse Teresa Romero Ramos' infection. But inadequate guidelines for personal protective equipment (PPE) may equally be to blame.

Ebola in the U.S.
Are nurses ready to care for these patients?
What is the best way for nurses to make sure they are prepared to deal with a possible case of Ebola virus in their healthcare organizations? Stay informed and ask lots of questions, said nurses who work in infectious disease control. “The more questions we get and the more people look at the protocols and policies and ask for training, I think the more prepared we can be,” said Linda Greene, RN, MPS, CIC, an infection prevention manager at Highland Hospital in Rochester, N.Y., and a former board member of the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology.

Mental health

Older Kiwis taking their own lives a month after visit to GP
Media release from Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists
A study has found that older New Zealanders committing suicide often visited their doctors one month before taking their lives.


Urgent call for review of dose levels
More than 40 per cent of pensioners in the south are taking five or more medicines, with experts calling on the Southern District Health Board to fund a review of medication levels.

Kiwis may be hit by higher medicine costs
A leaked document has exposed dozens of differences between New Zealand and the United States on some of the most controversial aspects of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement.

Social health

Looking out for vulnerable children
Protecting and keeping our children safe from harm is a key aim of the new Vulnerable Children Act 2014. It is also the subject of the first Issue of Policy Brief, a new publication that has been developed and written by the Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners(RNZCGP) Policy Team.

Articles of interest

Lost opportunities...the challenges of “missed nursing care”
Missed nursing care, defined as any aspect of required patient care that's omitted (in part or whole) or delayed, doesn't come without consequences or adverse events.1 Similar concepts include care rationing and unfinished care.2-4 The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) reports that errors of omission are much more common than errors of commission and often remain unreported.5Missed nursing care, a measure of nursing process, is a poorly understood activity.5,6,%202014

From the Nursing Council

Application for prescribing rights for registered nurses practising in primary health and specialty teams
The Nursing Council has submitted an application for designated prescribing rights for registered nurses practising in primary health and specialty teams. The application will be considered by the Ministry of Health before further steps are taken to introduce a regulation enabling further registered nurses to prescribe.  This application builds on the Councils consultation for “specialist nurse prescribing” in 2013.  This proposal was strongly supported by submitters with many considering there would be clear benefits for patients.

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 21 October  2014

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