11 months ago

Selwyn Times: June 14, 2016

16 Tuesday

16 Tuesday June 14 2016 SELWYN TIMES News Post-quake health services in The Canterbury health system has been put under massive pressure postquake, with budgets cut and demands soaring. Emma-Jane McLennan takes a look at how the health system operates, and what it deals with on a daily basis EVERY DAY, $3.8 million is pumped into Canterbury’s public health system. It is a fully-integrated network with six specialised hospitals, each working in with smaller clinics, after-hours surgeries, rest homes and GPs. But while it is internationally recognised as a leading integrated health system, it is still suffering post-quake, Canterbury District Health Board planning and funding team leader Greg Hamilton (left) said. “This system remains under pressure. After five years both the mental health and general health work forces are showing signs of strain in their efforts to provide the best service for our population.” Every day, 323 new patients walk through the doors of various CDHB hospitals around Canterbury. That’s about 256 at Christchurch Hospital, 22 at Burwood Hospital, 11 at Ashburton Hospital, eight at The Princess Margaret Hospital and five at Hillmorton Hospital. The hospitals are incredibly busy. Lack of funding is greatly affecting nurses, New Zealand Seasonal changes in CDHB hospital admissions by quarter. ​ Canterbury hospital admissions for 2014-2015 • All admissions: 118,021 • Christchurch Hospital: 93,700 • Burwood Hospital: 8311 • Ashburton Hospital: 4325 • The Princess Margaret Hospital: 3076 • Hillmorton Hospital: 1997 •Note: It is possible for the same person to be admitted to more than one hospital as part of the same stay. Also, Christchurch Women’s Hospital are included in the Christchurch Hospital statistics as it is part of the same campus Nurses Organisation president Grant Brookes said. “My colleagues in Christchurch are feeling really frustrated. They can see the effects of under funding in our communities and they see how it’s affecting their colleagues at work too.” There are around 9400 employees working for the CDHB and a further 9000 who work in the community on CDHBfunded contracts. As of March 31 there were more than 950 doctor full-time equivalents and 2900 nurse fulltime equivalents employed by the CDHB. That’s more than 180 more doctors and more than 630 more nurses compared to 2008. Hospital staff put in an “extraordinary” effort to make sure the community’s health needs are met, CDHB executive director of nursing Mary Gordon (below) said. “In spite of all the difficulties since the quakes, our staff have ensured our community has continued to receive the best health care possible. We are immensely proud and appreciative of our people’s remarkable achievements in the health system over the past five years.” Funding issues in the health sector have been highlighted this year, with the New Zealand Council of Trade Unions and the NZNO making calls prior to the Budget 2016 for extra health funding – just to keep up with need. “Anything less than [an increase of] $691 million should be regarded as a cut in funding and will result in cuts to services,” the NZCTU said. Health Minister Jonathan Coleman (left) announced an increase of $568 million in health funding in the Budget. But Mr Brookes of the NZNO said the funding is “at least $33 million short” of what is required to provide for the health needs of Cantabrians. “The Government is also saying it wants all these new services but it’s not even funding the current ones . . . it’s not the DHB that’s to blame here, it’s the Government and its disturbing priorities.” STOCK CLEARANCE SALE VOLT Sofa bed Available in 4 colour options. Includes cushions. NOW INNERSPRUNG MATTRESS Offers valid 25 May to 20June 2016. *Storewide discount excludes Everyday Low Price furniture and Ecocare. $1190 $609 SAVE 30% to off STOREWIDE* Riccarton Megastore, 179 Blenheim Rd. Ph 341 3196 • OPEN 7 DAYS •

SELWYN TIMES Tuesday June 14 2016 17 News Canty suffering Margins are tight and Canterbury’s earthquakes continue to have a major impact on the health of Cantabrians, according to the CDHB’s latest annual report. In it, CDHB chairman Murray Cleverley and chief executive David Meates detail the impact it has had, calling it “a population under strain.” “Nowhere has this been more evident than in the demand for mental health services, which has increased significantly.” CDHB mental health statistics show that post-quake there has been a 95 per cent increase in new rural cases, a 79 per cent increase in new child and youth cases, a 40 per cent increase in adult contacts and a 30 per cent increase in children and youth under monthly care. To put those into numbers, there were 12,046 Canterbury children under monthly care for mental health issues, this had jumped to 13,872 by 2014. But the even more significant move is the increase to 15,670 between 2014-2015. This increase is reflected across other mental health statistics. The jump in numbers of people needing help for mental health issues is expected at the five-year mark, Mental Health Advocacy and Peer Support manager Sue Ricketts (left) said. “At some point people just can’t deal with it anymore, and we’re at that point now.” The CDHB annual report stated that the demand for mental health services is not abating: “And we don’t, based on international research on post-disaster psycho-social recovery, expect it to for another five to 10 years.” And earthquakes haven’t just affected Cantabrians’ health – they have significantly damaged health infrastructure too. BUSY: Christchurch Hospital had 93,700 patients through its doors in 2014-15. The quakes left 200 CDHB buildings damaged, 14,000 hospital rooms damaged and caused the loss of 14 per cent of rest home beds and 106 acute inpatient beds. Since May 2013, just about every ward in Christchurch Hospital has had to be moved to allow quake repairs, strengthening and upgrades to firewalls to take place. In its annual report, the CDHB calls it “hugely disruptive . . . most likely the largest hospital move ever undertaken in New Zealand.” Burwood Hospital’s recent redevelopment and Christchurch Hospital’s ongoing one are part of the largest ever public health investment in New Zealand. In total the redevelopment of both hospitals will cost more than $650 million, in addition to $383 million of an earthquake related programme of works. The CDHB has seen this as a unique opportunity to build back better, to modernise Christchurch’s health facilities using a “long life, loose fit” model. But while there has been an incredible amount of work to repair and upgrade hospitals, there has also been a lot done outside of it through the Canterbury Clinical Network. Its main aim is to keep people well and in their homes, with a range of strategies which ultimately treats more than 30,000 in the community who would otherwise have to go to the emergency department or be admitted to hospital. Its work has resulted in Canterbury having an acute admission rate 30 per cent below the national average – which means in Canterbury you are more likely to have your health needs met in the community, rather than hospital, than anywhere else in the country. The CDHB says while its environment has provided challenges, it has also provided opportunities to re-orientate its system. “The Canterbury health system is internationally recognised as a leading integrated health system . . . [but] in spite of many positive changes to services, this system remains under pressure.” Neighbourly under fire for information sharing • By Gabrielle Stuart PRIVACY CONCERNS have been sparked by the policies of community network site Neighbourly, around sharing of user’s personal information. To create an account with the site, people need to give a full name, address and contact details, and are also asked to give a driver’s licence number. But under the privacy policy, users’ personal information can be shared with any of Neighbourly’s partners. The partners include businesses like BP, Vodafone, Contact and AMI as well as councils and community groups and its major shareholder, Fairfax Media. But Neighbourly co-founder Casey Eden (left) said that would not happen without the permission of users. “An example of when member’s details might be shared is when a partner is running a competition. We’ll pass on the member’s details so this prize can be distributed, but this is always outlined in our terms and conditions.” He said providing a driver’s licence was a quick way for members to verify their profile, and the contact information was needed so urgent text message alerts could be sent around crime or safety. Privacy Commissioner spokesman Charles Mabbett said people had raised concerns or asked questions about Neighbourly’s privacy policy, but that had not progressed to any formal complaints or investigations. He said, ideally, companies should make keeping your information private the default and only share it if people chose to opt in, but currently that was rare. He said people needed to be careful to read the fine print before they signed up to online services. “We would urge people to read the terms and conditions and see how their information is being shared. Then really it comes down to consent: Do they want to consent to use that service.” NetSafe executive director Martin Cocker said there were often complaints through its The Orb online crime reporting service from people who had signed up to a service and ended up being contacted by other businesses. He said the privacy policy was honest in saying how the information was shared, so the responsibility was on users to be aware of what they were agreeing to, and then decide if they were comfortable using the service. LAWyerS We have over 40 years’ experience to assist you with… • Buying and Selling Houses and Commercial Property • Wills, Trusts and Estate matters • All issues facing you and your business; • Employment Law matters; • Traffic matters; • Earthquake related issues; and • Advice regarding Retirement Villages Call John, Brendan or Andrew today on 03 366 8996 to find out how we can help you. Email. 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