News bulletin 23 March

on 23 March


Welcome to the College of Nurses Aotearoa News Update.
No. 292 23 March 2016


From NZ media this week

New Zealander Awarded Highest International Nursing Honour
Red Cross nurse Graham Zinsli has been awarded the highest international nursing distinction, the Florence Nightingale Medal.
Read more here

Get flu jab or wear a mask policy finds backing
Some health workers who do not get flu jabs will have to wear face masks, after the Ministry of Health voiced its support for the contentious policy.
Read more here


Changes to Health Advisory Committees
Health Minister Jonathan Coleman has announced changes to the current health advisory committees and entities.
The National Health Board and National Health Committee will be disestablished and their functions streamlined into the Ministry of Health.
Read more here

Aged care

Liam Butler interviews Andrew Bayly MP for Hunua
How is the Government committed to older New Zealanders?
Andrew Bayly MP:
Older New Zealanders have worked hard and should be able to enjoy their retirement with dignity.
A key aspect of our commitment is growing health services through a record $15.9 billion budget commitment in health. This includes our $76.1 million commitment to hospices and palliative care. We are funding areas which make a huge difference to people's lives by ensuring terminally ill people are as free from pain and suffering as possible. Hospices provide valuable care and support for families and friends, and this investment will ensure they can continue to do so.
Read more here


Govt accused of rushing changes to cervical cancer screening
The government is being accused of haste and an attempt to cut costs over planned changes to screening for cervical cancer.
Read more here

Cultural safety

Barriers to healthcare more common for lesbians, gays, bisexuals
Reuters Health - People who are lesbian, gay or bisexual (LGB) are more likely to run into obstacles when trying to get healthcare than their straight peers, according to a number of new studies.
Read more here

DHBs and PHOs

Funding cuts to Oamaru Hospital reduce bed numbers
Six beds will be removed from Oamaru Public Hospital as it moves to meet predicted funding cuts.
The Southern District Health Board (SDHB) has come under fire for how it funds its hospitals - and how its proposed allocation to Waitaki District Health Services (WDHS) will affect Oamaru's
Read more here

Middlemore Hospital overflowing with patients
Middlemore Hospital is already bursting at the seams and it's not even winter.
Last week the hospital was at 106 per cent capacity while today it was at 108 per cent.
Read more here

Concerns over increasing pressure after funding cuts at Oamaru Hospital
There are concerns that predicted funding cuts at Oamaru Public Hospital could lead to patients being discharged earlier than usual, putting pressure on community organisations to pick up the slack.
Read more here

Improving health care for larger New Zealanders
A Wairarapa academic is part of a nationwide project to help larger New Zealanders access safe, compassionate and equitable health care.
Read more here

Mental health

Government to fund several mental health packages worth millions for Canterbury
A 5.7 earthquake in Christchurch last month triggered a review of Canterbury's mental health services and has prompted an extra $20 million from the Government.
Read more here


Will a soft-drink tax work in NZ?
New Zealand public health advocates are celebrating the United Kingdom Government's move to tax soft-drinks but others remain unconvinced, including Health Minister Jonathan Coleman.
Read more here

Health Minister says no plans for NZ sugar tax
The Government has been called upon to follow Britain's move and place a sugar levy on soft drinks, but Health Minister Jonathan Coleman said there were no plans for a similar measure here.
Read more here

NZ could be next for tax on sugary drinks - FIZZ spokesman
The New Zealand Government may reconsider its position on a tax on sugary drinks as part of a comprehensive strategy to tackle obesity, says FIZZ spokesman, Dr Gerhard Sundborn.
"In light of the UK sugary drink tax announcement, our government may reconsider its position, says Dr Sundborn, a research fellow at the University of Auckland.
Read more here

Pressure mounts in NZ as Britain announces 'game-changer' sugar tax
Britain's surprise decision to introduce a sugar tax on soft drinks has been hailed as a game-changer by a veteran Kiwi anti-sugar lobbyist.
The British government unexpectedly announced in Wednesday's Budget that it would introduce the tax from 2018.
Read more here

Rod Jackson: Could a sugar tax do more harm than good?
When our Minister of Health and Prime Minister say they're waiting for definitive evidence on the health benefits of a sugary drinks tax before deciding whether to follow the United Kingdom's lead, they know they are on safe ground.
That's because 'definitive evidence' on the health benefits of national taxes is unobtainable.
Read more here

Ministry of Health Encourages Schools to Adopt Water Only Policies
The Ministry of Health is encouraging schools to consider adopting healthy drink policies following information being provided to all schools by the Ministry of Education.
The Ministry of Health supports a simple schools drinks policy of water and plain reduced fat milk.
Read more here

Public health

Call for Government to fund HPV vaccine for boys
• HPV - human papilloma virus is sexually transmitted
• Most people catch it and their body clears it eventually
• In some cases it persists and is linked to several types of cancer, such as of the cervix, penis, anus and throat
• A vaccine, Gardasil, can protect against four HPV strains, two of which are linked to cancers and two to warts
• The vaccine is state funded in NZ for girls
• Parents who want their boys vaccinated have to pay about $450
Read more here

MidCentral smear rates lacking
Asian women in the MidCentral District Health Board area have been identified as having the lowest cervical screening rates out of the three priority groups.
Read more here

From International media this week

Assisted dying: B.C. nurses won't get guidelines yet
College of Registered Nurses of B.C. says it is simply following the law.
B.C.'s College of Registered Nurses will continue to encourage its members to seek legal advice before participating in physician-assisted dying procedures, despite a call from at least one doctor to
allow nurses to help.
Read more here

RCN suggests new nurse education model for Wales
Nurses would find it easier to train in more than one field of nursing, under proposals for the future of nurse education set out by the Royal College of Nursing in Wales.
The strategy covers pre- and post-registration education, advanced practice and education for healthcare support workers.
Read more here

In a fight between nurses and doctors, the nurses are slowly winning
More states are allowing nurses to provide all the kinds of care they learned about in school.
Read more here

Articles of interest

The intersection of policy and informatics
Today's nurse manager must be on top of direct patient care, the needs of families, and the requirements of agency administration. In addition, we must understand federal and state laws and regulations that have application to our role. When it comes to policies regarding electronic health records (EHRs) and telehealth, we must also have a working knowledge of informatics, including an understanding of the interface among computers, technology, finance, and patient data. Knowing how to analyze information and data enables us to provide evidence of the fiscal impact of nursing care.
Read more here

Professional development

National workshop on reducing harm from healthcare associated infection
Event date: 9th - 9th Aug 2016 
Location: Rydges Hotel, Wellington 
Infection Prevention & Control
The Health Quality & Safety Commission is holding a national workshop on reducing harm from healthcare associated infections on 9 August 2016.
The workshop will be held from 9am–4pm at the Rydges Hotel, Wellington and will focus on:
multidisciplinary approaches to infection prevention and control (IPC)
the value of national surveillance and quality improvement programmes to reduce harm from healthcare associated infections
use of IPC software to improve sector capability.
The workshop is aimed at infection prevention and control nurse specialists, clinical microbiologists, infectious diseases physicians, scientists, pharmacists and others with an interest in infection prevention.

Speakers include:
Dr John Ferguson, infectious diseases physician and clinical microbiologist, director of the infection prevention service, Hunter New England Health
Associate Professor Rhonda Stuart, infectious diseases physician and medical director of infection control, Monash Health
Ms Kris Farrar, clinical nurse specialist, infection prevention service, Hunter New England Health.
Registrations open on 2 May and early bird registration ($75) is available until 14 June 2016. Further information on the programme and registration will be made available soon. 

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 22 March 2016.

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