News bulletin 20 May

on 20 May


Welcome to the College of Nurses – News Update.
No. 252 20 May 2015

From NZ media this week

Southern hospitals bear the brunt of Government underfunding
Nurses, families and communities in Oamaru, Ranfurly, Dunstan, Balclutha and Gore may soon be without jobs and quality healthcare services as Southern DHB is forced to cut 5 percent from its budget.

Nurses raise concerns over SDHB funding cuts
More criticism for the beleaguered Southern District Health Board and the funding it receives from the Government.

Nurses' day links with the past
An old stethoscope, rickety stretcher and various other instruments from times gone by made a comeback at Taranaki Base Hospital, but not for use on the patients.

Nelson nurses celebrate their role in healthcare
Nurses from across the region got together to celebrate the work they do caring for patients as part of International Nurses Day.

Debs 'a genuine Hawke's Bay nurses and midwives hero'
Debs Higgins, who is the Family Violence Intervention Programme Co-Ordinator at the Hastings Health Centre (HHC), was the big winner at the International Nurses and Midwives Day Awards at Hawke’s Bay Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital today (Friday, 15 May).

Help on hand for hepatitis patients
More than 50 Rotorua residents living with hepatitis B or C have been educated by a community hepatitis nurse and received a FibroScan assessment (liver ultrasound) during the last two months.

Record numbers of doctors and nurses in Taranaki
Getting sick in Taranaki shouldn't be too much of a pain with more than 600 doctors and nurses on the case. 
As of March 31, the Taranaki District Health Board employed 146 doctor and 499 nurse full-time equivalents.

New MidCentral chief Kathryn Cook wants to build a 'hospital of the future'
Building a hospital of the future that the community can be proud of is the priority for new MidCentral District Health Board boss Kathryn Cook.

5,500 more doctors and nurses in our hospitals
Health Minister Jonathan Coleman says a record number of doctors and nurses are working in District Health Boards across the country.
"Our dedicated health workforce is making a difference to the lives of New Zealanders day in and day out," says Dr Coleman.

Over 1,300 doctors and nurses taking care of BoP patients
Health Minister Jonathan Coleman says a record number of doctors and nurses are working at the Bay of Plenty District Health Board (DHB).
"Our dedicated health workforce is making a difference to the lives of patients in the Bay of Plenty," says Dr Coleman.

Nursing a family calling
Watching the joy her mum got from nursing was the prompt Claudia Huitema needed to follow her mother into the health field.

Ward 9 hits new record
Ward 9 at Middlemore Hospital has hit a new record. 
As of May 7, it has been free of central line associated bacteraemia - known as CLAB - for a total of 1631 days. 
The hospital says that's been achieved by a dedicated team of nurses who focus on quality patient care.

From International media this week

No penalty for Guantanamo nurse who refused to force-feed
MIAMI (AP) " A Navy nurse who refused to force feed prisoners on hunger strike at the U.S. base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, is no longer facing an administrative discharge over his protest, his lawyer said Wednesday.

The pros and cons of EHR adoption, according to nurses
When it comes to adopting electronic health record (EHR) systems in healthcare environments, there's good news and bad news. Nurses love them and would dislike reverting back to paper-based systems. Unfortunately, they're rarely consulted on EHR system deployments, even though they're the ones using them on the front lines.

EHRs, patient safety and efficiency: 6 findings from nurses
A new survey from Allscripts gauging nurses' perspectives on EHRs finds most nurses agree digitized records improve patient safety, but they are less confident in EHRs' ability to boost efficiency.

Why hospitals must educate nurses about healthcare costs (US op-ed piece)
Every day hospitals waste money, and the non-personnel expenses for a medical-surgical nursing unit at a typical hospital in America are thousands of dollars over budget. The nurse manager might investigate and find that one reason for the rise in costs is poor handling and labeling of lab tests, leading to repeat testing that is usually not reimbursed. Another potential reason is that nurses are taking far more supplies than are needed to patient rooms, often forgetting to charge for these items. The supplies cannot be used for other patients once they are removed from the storage room, and the hospital loses reimbursement, as charges are not reported.

Does patient monitoring really improve patient safety?
Patient surveillance — including detecting and reporting changes in vital signs — may make a big difference in improving patient outcomes, according to a whitepaper published by patient monitoring services company Isansys.

Public health

More asthma research needed for Maori
The Global Asthma Network is desperately in need of funding to undertake asthma research, which it says results in high death rates for Maori and Pasifika.

NZ is the 'gout capital of the world'
Cherry juice may be the remedy to New Zealand's reputation as the "gout capital of the world".
Professor Lisa Stamp, a rheumatologist and researcher at Otago University, Christchurch, has won $144,000 in funding from the Health Research Council (HRC) to study the scientific basis for claims that tart cherry concentrate helps those suffering from the painful joint condition.

Medical Maggots for Wound Healing
In World War I the efficacy of maggots as a treatment was noted, and nearly 100 years later they are still being used to clean chronic ulcers and wounds in hospitals and veterinary clinics around New Zealand. Ruth Beran catches up with Neville Keen who received larval therapy for his diabetic ulcer, nurses Judy Geary and Sonia Richardson who use maggots at Gore Hospital, and Dallas Bishop who grows the medical maggots from flies in her insectary.

Leprosy cases still popping up in New Zealand
The days of the infamous leper colonies are behind us, but leprosy continues to be diagnosed in New Zealand.
About four people a year come down with a confirmed or suspected case of leprosy each year, according to a New Zealand Medical Journal article released on Friday.

Drugs, alcohol and smoking

Smoking cannabis linked to respiratory problems
People who smoke cannabis as little as once a week are more likely to suffer respiratory symptoms such as morning cough, bringing up phlegm, and wheezing, according to University of Otago research.

Doctors call for stricter alcohol laws
New Zealand's top medical body had called for a clampdown on our rampant boozing, including banning advertising, raising the drinking age, and increasing taxes.

Work and management

Six effective ways to have that difficult conversation at work
Employees want more feedback. Gen Y employees in particular, want constant feedback. Managers however are often reluctant to give feedback if they fear that what starts as a rational conversation may degenerate into an emotional one. Even managers trained in coaching have admitted to being reluctant to tackle employees seen as abrasive or aggressive.

Articles of interest

Original Research: The Efficacy of a Nurse-Led Breathing Training Program in Reducing Depressive Symptoms in Patients on Hemodialysis
AJN, American Journal of Nursing
The purpose of this randomized controlled trial was to examine the efficacy of a nurse-led, in-center breathing training program in reducing depressive symptoms and improving sleep quality and health-related quality of life in patients on maintenance hemodialysis.

Research article  
Teaching science content in nursing programs in Australia: a cross-sectional survey of academics
Birks M, Ralph N, Cant R, Hillman E, Tie Y
BMC Nursing 2015, 14 :24 (1 May 2015)
Abstract | Provisional PDF

50 years of NP excellence
Abstract: The nurse practitioner (NP) role is marking its 50th anniversary in 2015. This article explores the history and future of the role by talking with NP thought leaders.

Nurse practitioners are not a consolation prize
There are many forces trying to prove that nurse practitioners (NPs) are not qualified to practice independently, care for patients with chronic and complex illnesses, or lead a healthcare team. We are often referred to as “second rate” or a substitute for physicians now that there are not enough physicians to go around. More years of training for physicians versus NPs is a sticking point often used to back up this argument. Clearly, it takes more years of formal training to become a family physician than an NP

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 19 May 2015

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