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NEWS MidCentral • Manawatu • Tararua • Horowhenua •




They have arrived – keep an eye out for the first of our MidCentral DHB fleet vehicles displaying various health messages! MidCentral DHB’s fleet of over 165 cars will be used in a newly developed campaign where various health messages will be proudly displayed on our cars. Messages will focus on high priority areas such as alcohol awareness, cervical screening, hand hygiene, healthy lifestyles etc. The first two (pictured) arrived late last year promoting cardiovascular health and becoming smoke free. Throughout the year, other messages will be progressively rolled out to remaining vehicles. How many will you spot!?


Coming up...

March – Child Cancer Foundation Appeal Month March 17–23 – Leukaemia & Blood Cancer NZ Shave for a Cure April 6 – Daylight Savings Ends

Inside... • From the CEO’s Desk • MDHB Facebook • Positive Feedback • Memory Wall at Chapel • Kmart Wishing Tree Appeal • From the Chairman • MidCentral Health Clinical Board • CEO Good Deeds Award • Did You Know • Teaser Time • WERO Challenge • BNZ Workplace Challenge • Get Active! • Countdown Supports Children’s Ward with $37,000 Donation • Horowhenua After Hours Clinic Opens • Project Updates • Events In-Focus • The Road to Becoming Smokefree • Clinical Networks • Ward 25 First Falls Aware Ward • Micki Tyler 37 Years Celebration • Paying It Forward • Rotorua Half-Ironman • For Sale – Kimberley and Former Horowhenua Hospital • Our Staff – Syed Zaman, RMO Director • Cardiac Resource Nurse Programme Launched • Ward 21 Staff Don New Uniforms • SMASCH Scheme • Education Matters • Communication With Someone With a Speech Impairment • Staff Graduates • MDHB Supports Very First Safe Sleep Day • What If? When the Earth Moves • Rattlin’ Bones – A Seismic Update • New Video Link Between MDHB and Wishaw Hospital, Scotland


I recently had the honour of travelling to Myanmar with a group of Rotarians to oversee the water filtration systems we had funded in four villages. It was a really interesting experience – the lifestyle, environment, and support services were so different and it made me

so many ways.

appreciate how lucky we are in

Our New Zealand publicly-funded health service is a great example of how lucky we are by comparison, and made even better by striving to improve services and care for our patients by providing timely and equitable access, service quality and safety, and best value. Even so, we can always improve, and that’s another great attribute of our health service – the desire to do better. Back here at MidCentral DHB, we are working to make


improvements to our hospital services. We are wanting to improve the experience for patients, particularly their journey through the system. We all know that some patients experience delays along the way, particularly as they move from one service or area to another. Their stay in hospital is often made longer as access to a bed, test, assessment, etc is not as readily available as it should be. The Patient Flow Improvement Group, sponsored by MidCentral Health’s Senior Management Team,

is leading a number of changes. These cover attitudinal/

cultural matters, processes and the physical environment. Carrie Naylor-Williams has been appointed Service Manager, Patient Flow and will be responsible for co-ordinating and managing this programme of work over the next two years. I encourage you to find out more about this work, and how you and your service can assist. Help us make the hospital experience better for our patients.

Want to keep up to date with what’s happening around the DHB? Connect to the MidCentral District Health Board’s Facebook page: midcentraldhb 2

k c a b d e e f e v i t i Pos received fromand our patientss visitor Hello – I am currently living in Southern California and my sister is a patient in the STAR 1 section of the hospital. I really appreciate the system whereby I can regularly send emails to my sister and receive a receipt that she has received it. This is a great service, because when she lived in her home in Levin, I had no way of knowing whether she received anything I sent her, either by post or by email. Keep up the good work – wonderful to know she is in good hands.

My mother was admitted to Ward 24 from CCU. She was in a pretty bad way and was given a side room – staff were all very welcoming and kind. Special mention to the overnight care assistant who did everything he could to make a very difficult night more bearable. Thanks to everyone. I would like to express my appreciation to the staff in the Children’s Assessment Unit and the Children’s Ward. My daughter was admitted and staff, from the hospital aide, RNs, to the doctors and specialists were all very accommodating and supportive. I would also like to acknowledge the teamwork present which helped maintain effective work relationships with each other, as well as the parents and families. Patient safety and establishing partnerships with parents was very evident. I will leave the ward with even more knowledge, helping prevent my baby from coming back! Thanks to you all. I would like to acknowledge the cleaner, Barbara for her bright and cheerful manner. She was a pleasure to chat with as she cheerfully completed her work. She said she enjoys her job, and it clearly shows.

MDHB staff member posting to the chapel’s memory wall.



The holiday season can be a difficult time for anyone who has lost a loved one. To help people deal with this stress, the chaplains created a memory wall – a way for people to acknowledge the passing of a loved one.

Over the holiday period staff, patients, and visitors wrote the name of the one they had lost onto a sticky, posting it to the wall. This ritual received positive feedback and now the chaplains are seeking feedback on what should be done with these names.A more permanent wall? A book? A collage? Email your ideas to


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In December last my fellow board members and I visited the medical imaging department to see first hand the new suite of equipment. We had approved this investment earlier in the year and it was exciting to see the new technology on site and the benefits it will deliver to both patients and staff. We also took the opportunity to take a look at Ward 25 and the investment made in the Releasing Time to Care project and Falls Awareness. These initiatives are very important in terms of ensuring a safe environment for staff and patients. This month we visited some of the departments which are classified as critical care in terms of a major civil emergency and which are key in our master health service planning project. These areas, such as ED, theatres, ICU have reached capacity and need to be reconfigured.

MidCentral DHB has been slowly and steadily making small investments and planning for a major capital spend in coming years. Our current financial performance is just short of budget. It is very important we continue to exercise prudence – how we spend every dollar today will impact what we can spend in the future. Be sure to know how your service is performing financially and do what you can to ensure it lives within its means.


Phil Sunderland, Chairman

INVESTMENTS MADE OVER LAST THREE AND HALF YEARS – SOME EXAMPLES STAFF RELATED: • An extra 80 full time equivalents. • Care Capacity Demand Management. • Releasing Time to Care. QUALITY INITIATIVES: • Hand hygiene. • Falls awareness. • CLAB. • Theatre productivity. CAPITAL EXPENDITURE: $47.5 MILLION, INCLUDING: • Fourth permanent linear accelerator and bunker. • Upgrading medical imaging equipment. • Child, adolescent & oral health services, including new mobile units and fixed facilities. • Clinical records building. • Upgrading breastscreening from analogue to digital imaging. • Revamping MDHB website. • Improved car parking. • Upgrading telephony systems moving toward wireless technology has started and will be implemented over a couple of years. • Maintaining our base asset stocks (buildings and equipment) through our regular asset management programme. NATIONAL & REGIONAL INITIATIVES: • Regional information systems which will take place over three years. Part 1 – clinical portal is now in place at MDHB. • Health Benefit Limited’s finance, procurement and supply chain project which is to happen over five years.

Established in 2003, the Clinical Board’s key purpose and responsibility is to lead all clinical governance activities that occur within MidCentral Health, in order to maintain the highest possible standards of care for patients.


Pictured back l to r: Ken Clark, Leona Dann, Jan Dewar, Lorraine Welman, Dave Ayling, Susan Murphy and John Waldon. Front: Kim Fry, John Chrisp, Annette Dyer, Muriel Hancock and Anne Podd. Absent: Murray Georgel, Alberto Ramirez-Rodriguez and John White (Acting Director of Nursing). New members joining from next month are Judy Leader and Michele Coghlan, newly appointed Director of Nursing.



Eleven nominations for the CEO’s Good Deeds Award were received during October and November 2013 – it is great to see the wonderful community spirit shown by so many. This resulted in five boxes of chocolates being awarded. • Sally Hall, Registered Nurse, Star 4, Horowhenua Health Centre for organising a remarkable fundraising campaign. $900 was raised from a sausage sizzle and $2300 from a garage sale, to help the people of the Philippines. • Ally Bridger, Pharmacy Technician for bringing joy to the chemo patients around Christmas time. She started by putting Christmas stickers on the patient’s medication bags and over the years has included various crafty gifts. This year she made up painted terracotta pots and filled them with goodies. • Michela Fox, Nurse Educator, Ward 21. On her way home from work on a wet night in October, a car slid off the road into a fence near Feilding. The driver was visibly shaken and was at a loss on what to do. Michela stood with him in the rain and reassured him until the police arrived. • Tammy Tuakimoana, Community Registered Nurse, Mental Health Services – Oranga


Hinengaro for supporting a dying tanga whaiora who had little other support in the world. She ran errands, getting her favourite foods, singing, and caring for her. • Jane Henderson, Enrolled Nurse, Child Health. On a child’s home visit in October, she helped at a major motor vehicle accident that occurred outside the house. She was the first health professional on the scene and assisted a mother and young baby until emergency services arrived. The other nominations were: • Rob Wilson, Orderly, Spotless, Dianne Leader, Cleaner, Intensive Care Unit, Josh Puts, Registered Nurse, Child Health, Steve Simcox, Purchasing Officer, Materials Management, Kim Findlay, Occupational Physiotherapist, Occupational Health Unit and Kerri Theuissen, Site Coordinator, Maori Mental Health • Trisha Liverton, Vision/Hearing Technician, Public Health Services • Judith Clapham, Elective Services Administrator, Surgical Services • David Quaile, Physiotherapist, Horowhenua Health Centre • Sharon van der Plas, Registered Nurse, Operating Theatre • Dr Rushil Patel, House Officer, Dental.


For those of you who do not know about this scheme, Chief Executive Officer, Murray Georgel, has a Good Deeds morning tea award running for all staff who “go that extra mile” to help out clients and colleagues, or make their service a better place in which to work. If you know anyone who has stepped outside their job description and gone beyond the call of duty, nominate them for the good deeds award. It is as easy as emailing Jill Matthews their name(s) and a brief description of what they did.

A lot of work is being done around the region with elective surgery! Central region DHBs have made the transformation of elective services a priority in 2014 and beyond. To learn more on what is being done, read the Elective Services Productivity & Workforce Programme (ESPEP) fact sheet on the MidCentral DHB website under publications – general.


KNOW.. .



• Over the past year there were approximately 3,150 clinic attendances and 492 referrals received for inpatients with diabetes. • The service provided shared care with the Women’s Health High Risk Pregnancy Service for 63 women. • Within the service there is 65 children and 51 adolescents with diabetes (shared care with the Child Health Service), and approximately 50 people on insulin pumps. • The D&E Service sends out over 3,000 letters a year to general practice teams to keep them informed of consultations. • Services are provided in outpatient and inpatient settings, schools/day care, general practice surgeries, via email or telephone, and in people’s homes across the DHB region. • Members of the D&E Service contribute to Ministry and Specialist Society National Initiatives which include, but is not limited to: the Ministry’s National Diabetes Services Improvement Group, Executive Committees of both the NZ Society for Endocrinology, the NZ Society for the Study of Diabetes, and have led the implementation of Diabetes RN prescribing in NZ.


Teaser Time MidCentral DHB



As you will all know, the single story section of Board Office has been demolished due to the structure not meeting seismic standards. The building had been on hospital grounds for many years and contained some beautiful architecture, some of which is pictured below. Earthquakes often act as a timely reminder that we need to be prepared. Answer the four questions below to test your preparedness! All correct entries go in the draw to win one of two double movie passes to Downtown Cinemas. Send your entries with contact details to: Teaser Time, C/- Communications Unit, Board Office. Entries must be received by Friday, 28 March 2014. Competition details are also available on our website. From the staff centre page click from the left hand menu “Staff Area” then “Teaser Time” or use the following link

LAST MONTH’S TEASER TIME WINNERS Thank you to everyone who responded to the “A MidCentral Holiday” Teaser Time last issue. Below are the winners: Leanne Larmer – STAR 4 & Bev Page – Nuclear Medicine. Leanne and Bev earned a double movie pass each courtesy of MDHB.

1. The Ministry of Civil Defence & Emergency Management advise that the

best action during an earthquake is to: “drop, cover and .........................”

2. If you are inside, resist the urge to run outside for shelter (circle).



Name __________________________________________

3. Which of these items should you not have in your emergency kit (circle):


Wind and waterproof clothing

Perishable items

4. Where was the quaked centred that struck the lower North Island on January 20th (circle)? Eketahuna






Department/Service _________________________________________________ Ext number _____________________________________


How’s the New Year’s resolution coming along?

If quitting smoking is a resolution you wish to achieve this year, the WERO challenge might be just what you need. WERO is about teams quitting together, rather than individuals trying to go it alone. Competing in groups of 10, individuals join a virtual Waka, competing in a 12 week challenge in the bid to win $5,000 which may go towards a fundraiser, or the charity of their choice. The winning Waka is the team that ends the 12 weeks with the most smoke free members. The competition runs from 1 March to 31 May. Contestants will be “Smokerlyzed” – a process which measures carbon monoxide levels in the user before, and at the conclusion of the event. Contact Marilyn McKay, 350 9119 or WERO Coordinator Nopera Rikihana 021 405 439.


BNZ workplace challenge For five weeks during November and December, a number of MidCentral DHB and Enable New Zealand staff took part in Sport Manawatu’s BNZ Workplace Challenge. This is an annual event which encourages teams of five to record how long they are active each day, competing for awards and prizes.

Top: The Famous Five made up of staff from Enable New Zealand. From left: Eileen Downing, Maria Greig-Anderson, Jessica Goggin, Jo Brew and Guida Fourie. The team placed 11th overall in the office based section. Below: Physios know the toll bowls can take on the body, therefore CARMA decided to take low impact to the EXTREME with a game of underwater bowls!

Two teams that competed in this year’s competition were ‘CARMA’ and ‘Famous Five’ – both contending for the office based category award. CARMA, a team of physios from MidCentral Health ended up winning the office based category, beating out 155 other teams. Members took part in activities such as kickboxing and aerobics to get their exercise count up. The team was active for a total of 19,000 minutes, completing 320 iMoves – points for walking, biking, running etc, where you would usually drive. Famous Five, made up of staff from Enable New Zealand really got into the competition, clocking up a total of 14,260 exercise minutes and completing 110 iMoves.


Get active! As those who have taken part in healthy staff initiatives such as Next Steppers and the BNZ Workplace Challenge will know, MidCentral DHB encourages staff to involve themselves in activities that help lead to a more healthy and active lifestyle. This is why a page on the HR portal site has been created to inform staff of the plethora of Sport Manawatu supported activities happening around the region. Activities include triathlons, cycling, and football tournaments – these have been integrated to an easy to read activity calendar. Head over to the healthy staff initiatives page on the HR portal to check them all out! Upcoming events are: • 28 February Manawatu Walking Festival • 22 March Country Road Manawatu Cycling Classic • 23 March Whanau Tri. For more information contact Raewyn Knight,

Left: Participant running towards the finish line with the crowds support in last year’s Whanau Triathlon.

! T U O T I K C E H C

Check out the latest edition of our “Let’s Talk About Health” column – Alcohol Law Changes and Your Kids – that has been publicised in all the local papers. 7

Countdown supports children’s ward with 37,000 donation



Palmerston North Hospital’s children’s ward often receives donations and gifts from the caring public, but it’s not every day a giant cheque to the value of $37,000 is received.

Thanks to Countdown, the sizable donation was awarded to MidCentral Health’s children’s ward as part of the supermarket chain’s Countdown Hospital Kids Appeal programme. Each year two hospitals are selected to receive donations; this is on top of the 10 that are supported each year. This was the first time Palmerston North Hospital had been selected! Service manager Robyn Williamson said she was thrilled with the generous donation noting that there were a few items on the wish list. The money has been earmarked for an electronic SimChild mannequin, which if purchased would be available in the children’s ward for emergency resuscitation training scenarios. The money may also be put towards a BiliBlanket, a portable phototherapy device for the treatment of neonatal jaundice. A further staff training programme is also planned to be purchased with the funds.

Horowhenua after hours clinic opens


Health care for residents in the Horowhenua is even more assessable with the opening of the Horowhenua after-hours health clinic.

Officially opened in December by Otaki/Horowhenua MP Hon Nathan Guy,the after-hours clinic which operates from the Horowhenua Health Centre will provide the area with an after-hours GP service. The clinic is open from 5–7.30pm weekdays and 8am to 5.30pm weekends and public holidays, giving residents a centralised place to go when trying to find a GP outside of normal work hours. Senior Portfolio Manager Primary Care Craig Johnston said that he is please a afterhours service now operates from the health centre. “We have a really good service here, one which compares favourably with others in similar areas.” The health centre has also recently opened an ultrasound service that sees patients one day a week, with the potential to add more days over time. The service is provided by Broadway Radiology with the help of MidCentral DHB and Central PHO.

From left: Countdown store managers Stuart Urbahn (Broadway), and Wayne Law (Kelvin Grove), with MDHB Child Health Service Manager Robyn Williamson, and Children’s Ward Charge Nurse Tracy Stone, join other store managers Kyleen Russell (Plaza), and Fiona Hannah (Rangitikei Street) in the $37,000 cheque presentation.


PROJECT UPDATES TEAM DEVELOPMENT UPDATE After taking a well deserved break over the holiday period, we are now well into the New Year – this means the team development programme is again, full steam ahead. Horowhenua Community Mental Health completed their workshops/presentations before the break, and the Palmerston North Community Mental Health team undertook the stocktake process in January – workshops/ presentations will go ahead this month. Maternity and clinical records are currently undertaking the programme. Again, the Executive Leadership Team would like to pass thanks to all who have participated so far.

WIRELESS CABLING UPDATE During the past couple of weeks you may have noticed workmen hard at work around the hospital. This is because cables for wireless technology are being installed around the Palmerston North campus – this will allow wireless devices to link in with the DHB wireless network in the future. Work around the C and H blocks has now completed, along with the Community Village. Work in the main entrance, Emergency Department, and other areas is due to begin mid February. Earplugs have been delivered to affected areas prior to work commencing

URGENT COMMUNITY CARE PROJECT UPDATE An exciting new development. In the latter part of 2013, St Johns and Central PHO clinical leaders were working on a revised service model for the Horowhenua Urgent Community Care service. In December a new model of care was accepted by the Ministry of Health, resulting in ongoing funding. The key feature of the revised service model is integration with other primary care services based out of the health centre such as district nursing, general practice teams, and aged residential care. The service will operate 12 hours a day, 7 days a week from the Horowhenua Health Centre – outside these hours, St Johns will respond to 111 calls by ambulance. The new model is expected to result in better quality of health care in the Horowhenua,while also being more cost effective and financially sustainable.

Wireless infrastructure being installed in the community village.

For more information on the project, please contact Craig Johnston,

PATIENT FLOW IMPROVEMENT PROJECT To help with our “Shorter Stays in Emergency Department” (SSIED) target, a patient flow improvement programme is now underway. The four areas of focus, as identified by a clinical workshop, being endorsed by the governance group, SMT, and with support from the Ministry of Health are to: • • • •

Provide services to meet demand 24 hours a day Reduce variation and improve reliability in the way in which we respond Reduce wasted time and plan ahead to achieve better results Develop systems to monitor, measure, and increase responsiveness to problems in patient flow.

A Service Manager, Patient Flow has been appointed to lead this work. This role is responsible for the effective management of patient flows into, within, and out of MidCentral Health, ensuring resources are aligned efficiently and effectively to support the operations of MidCentral Health, as well as being tasked with leading the establishment of the Hospital Operations Centre.


EVENTS Congratulations to the staff in Medical Imaging’s CT Department who won occupational health’s mystery weekend draw. The team won the prize after coming up with a new way of transferring patients from their bed to the CT scanner.

Ward 24 patient Zana Farrant with one of the new patient monitors which measure vital signs such as blood pressure and pulse. The new monitors are fixed to the room walls, meaning they are much more accessible as nurses no longer need to hunt down the old movable trolley.

Rehabilitation nursing makes the saved life worth living. Registered Nurse Julia Marsh showing patient Andrew Speller the new brochure which has recently been developed for STAR 2. It will help prospective patients, patients, and families better understand the rehabilitation process.

MDHB newly elected board which met for the first time on Tuesday 17 December 2013. From Left (standing): Lindsay Burnell, Nadarajah Manoharan (new member), Adrian Broad (new member), Ann Chapman, Richard Orzecki, Karen Naylor and Barbara Cameron. From left (sitting): Barbara Robson, Phil Sunderland (Chairman), Kate Joblin and Diane Anderson.



In memory of Joy Buchanan, the vision hearing technicians, public health nurses, admin resource team, and medical officer from Health on Main raised $500 through a raffle. The money went to Supporting Families in Mental Illness, with first prize going to receptionist Gail Feetham (front). Winners of the World Quality Month ‘Caption This’ competition. From left (standing): Noelene King, Darren Horsley, Wendy Blair. (Sitting) Jeanine Willink. Also pictured is Robbie Lane who along with Jane Henderson won a $250.00 prezzie card for their pilot programme which aims to assist children and their families manage constipation.

Father of past patient Nigel Scrimshaw and Neonatal Unit charge nurse Paula Spargo with the chair/single bed that was purchased for the unit’s family rooms. Funds were raised from the Coaster Pursuit Trail Ride organised by Nigel.

Jan Casey and her prize beetroot. Weighing in at a whopping 1.519kg, Jan won first prize in the beetroot growing competition organised by community mental health.


The road to becoming smoke free


During the past couple of months, a campaign targeting staff to help and support them quit smoking, or manage their smoking at work was led by a sub group of the smoking cessation taskforce. The campaign also aimed to ensure MDHB has smoke free sites.

During the campaign, ‘mythbusters’ regarding smoking myths were disseminated to all staff and contractors, as well as the installation of additional Smokefree signage and poster displays. Extra support was given to aide staff in managing their smoking in the form of subsidies on patches, gum, and lozenges. A review of the smoke free policy was also undertaken, as well as the opportunity for staff to put forward ideas to support smoking cessation. After much consideration, the gazebo at the front entrance to Palmerston North Hospital, the shelter on Heretaunga Street, and the gazebo near Allied Laundry will be removed this month.


What’s been happening...


In this edition we focus on the Long Term Conditions District Group. The group’s focus is on improving health services to people who are chronically unwell due to underlying long-term-conditions. The four projects for the year are: 1) Closer working relationships between hospital specialists, general practice teams, and pharmacists 2) Pre-diabetes self-management education 3) Increased community awareness about basic health services and how to access them 4) Increased access to and availability of support groups. The Clinical Networks are MidCentral Health’s foremost quality and service improvement initiative consisting of seven district groups including: Child Health, Long Term Conditions, Palliative Care, Urgent Care, Cancer, Mental Health and Addictions, and Older Persons. Involvement of clinicians and consumers is encouraged on all of the Clinical Networks District Groups and on the Working Parties that guide project work. For Clinical Network enquiries e-mail

If you would like further information, contact Muriel Hancock on Muriel Hancock (centre) and members from the taskforce installing one of the many Smokefree signs which will be displayed around DHB grounds.





An exciting new pilot is currently underway in Palmerston North Hospital’s Ward 25, with the ward being transformed into the first ‘falls aware ward’. Falls prevention is currently in the spotlight at Palmerston North Hospital, with patients, staff, and visitors all getting involved. The initiative, which follows on from our pledge to the ‘Open for better care’ campaign, involves implementing ‘5 essentials of falls prevention’ – ensuring falls risk is minimised. Staff, including contractors, patients, and their visitors are asked to ensure the five essential elements are in place when dealing with the patient, and as they leave the patient’s bedside. The pilot may be extended into other wards upon conclusion and evaluation – this is planned for April. For more information contact Jan Dewar on or Ward 25 Charge Nurse Caroline Dodsworth. The five essentials of Falls prevention: • All patients’ beds are at appropriate heights • Patient call bells are handy • All patients to wear non-slip slippers • Bed space is clutter-free • Regular toileting is carried out.



Micki with some objects on display at the hospital’s medical museum.

The days of being paid in pounds and standing while administering dental treatment are long gone, but someone who has been with the organisation since those times, clocking up a total of 37 years with MidCentral Health is Adolescent Dental Services District Coordinator Micki Tyler.

Now ready to retire, Micki will be leaving the MidCentral DHB family early this year, but before she steps out our doors for the last time, we thought we should pick her brain. How did your adventure at MidCentral Health start? It all started in Hunterville, 1956. I came to work as a dental nurse which came under the MDHB area at the time. Leaving in 1958, I returned to Palmerston North in 1968 and have worked for MDHB and its predecessors in various roles ever since.

museum. I have worked there ever since and am now a trustee. What are some of the changes you have seen in the world of dental health? I have seen the transition from fold up wooden dental chairs, to today’s modern electrically operated variety. From standing to sitting while administering treatment, and the change from treadle drills, to the modern high speed drills used now. When I first started, workers wore veils and starched white uniforms. Now, it’s a lot more casual, with employees sporting trousers and tunics. An interesting social change – we had to stand to attention when spoken to, hands behind our backs with anyone in authority, which is quite different to today’s more collaborative team approach.

Tell us about some of the major projects you have been involved in. I was involved in setting up the adolescent service in 1996 – providing oral health services to adolescents. In 2003 I was appointed as the District Adolescent Coordinator, which was a new initiative funded by the Ministry of Health.

Registered nurses Kara Montgomery and Soumya Jiyo Prasanth ensuring the patient’s bed is at the correct height.

After retiring from dental therapy practice in 2004, I had accumulated a significant amount of dental equipment and worked with Dr David Warnock to set up a dental display at the medical




Ester McLean (left), Nicky Crooks, and Wayne Gooding with some of the new sensory items in Ward 21’s sensory room.

Both Glen (left) and James crossed the finish line in their first ever half-ironman. Photograph care of Glen’s sister who was waiting anxiously at the finish line.


At last year’s MDHB Health Awards, Esther McLean and Joanne Henare were proud recipients of the Excellence in Health Care Advocacy Award, receiving a prize of $2,000. The two decided to put the money towards something they knew would benefit patients – this is where Ward 21 occupational therapist Nicky Crooks came into the picture.

Over the past few years, Nicky has been working relentlessly on a sensory room project, an evidence based programme that is making a seeable difference to consumers. Within the room, tools are provided which help users manage stressful emotions – this is done with objects that soothe and calm the consumer. For example, someone experiencing anxiety may use a weighted blanket to overcome feelings of panic. With the help of Esther and Joanne, more sensory items were purchased, some of which have been turned into kits that will be sent out to community based care, so they too can implement the tool. Two pieces of Maori artwork were also painted for Ward 21. Training is needed to use the sensory room. This is offered to all MidCentral DHB staff via the Education Centre.


The Rotorua half-Ironman – it has been named the most challenging half-Ironman in the country. Some might even suggest it is the toughest in the Southern Hemisphere.

Although a huge claim, this did not put off two Enable New Zealand employees from giving it a go. Housing advisors Glen Withers and James Donald took part in this year’s event which tested contenders with a 2 km swim, a 90 km cycle, and a 21 km run around the region’s Blue Lake. Both keen cyclists, the pair decided to try something new and compete in an event they were both strangers to. After coaching from one of Manawatu’s top athletes, and the support and encouragement from the team at Enable New Zealand, Glen and James successfully completed the challenge finishing with times of 6 hours 15 minutes, and 6 hours 20 minutes respectively. With such good results, Glen has entered the New Plymouth half-Ironman in February, Rotorua marathon in May, and there are rumours the pair will line up for the Taupo fullIronman in 2015.



MDHB are pleased to be in the disposal process of the Kimberley and former Horowhenua Hospital properties. Harcourts has been selected to market the two properties with tenders closing 3rd April 2014.


RMO Director Syed Zaman going through a patient chart with Dr Gloria Ashton, House Officer Internal Medicine.




Syed Zaman is the RMO Director here at MidCentral Health. Prior to starting his career in New Zealand, Syed spent 12 years working at the University Hospital of Southampton as a consultant in general and geriatric medicine. What is your education background? I obtained my medical degree from the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland. How did you come to be at MDHB? My love affair with the Manawatu goes back to 1995 when I came here as a trainee.I worked at Horowhenua Hospital with Dr Fred Hirst who influenced my decision to become a geriatrician. I returned to the UK in 2010, but decided to return here on a permanent basis a year later.

What are some of the projects you have been involved in at MDHB? I am Chair of the Older Persons District Group and I have recently taken up the role of Deputy Clinical Director for Medical Services. I have also been involved in the development of four Map of Medicine pathways relevant to older people – the most recent being ‘the prevention of falls in older people’. We are also in the early stages of putting together a business case for a Fracture Liaison Service (FLS). Tell us a little about the fracture liaison service and its progress? Fragility fractures due to osteoporosis cause a huge amount of suffering and cost the health service in the region of $330 million per year. The tragedy is that 50% of hip fracture patients give us advance notice by fracturing at another site prior to the hip fracture.

A FLS is an evidence-based, nurse-led service that identifies patients with new fragility fractures,assesses future fracture risk, and initiate treatment to prevent the next fracture. MDHB has established a FLS Working Group to put together a business case, which all DHBs must have in place by June 2014. The group is making great progress – well ahead of other DHBs in the central region. What are some of your hobbies? I am sports mad! I am a die-hard Spurs fan and love watching (and playing) tennis. Your favourite meal? A tie between a hot curry and a fillet steak cooked medium rare.


Cardiac Resource Nurse Programme launched


A newly established Cardiac Resource Nurse Programme was launched late last year with twenty eight Registered Nurses signing up to represent their ward or unit.

The programme aims to assist the participant’s professional growth in cardiac nursing, while being a role model for other staff in their clinical setting. To this end, the Cardiac Resource Nurse Programme will provide cardiac specific knowledge and skills, and have the full support and encouragement of the specialist cardiology nursing team. The program launched with presentations from nursing and medical staff on providing holistic care for patients with acute coronary syndrome and heart failure, as well as other key cardiac care topics. The more popular presentation, which staff said sure beats PowerPoint presentations or demonstrations with plastic models, was a guided heart dissection and anatomical review by Cardiologist Dr Dave Mundell. After a hiatus over the holiday period, the programme has reconvened with the next meeting scheduled for Tuesday 11 March. Pictured is Cardiologist Dr Dave Mundell performing dissection on a sheep’s heart and lungs.

Staff model the new uniform from left: Helen Fox (Staff Nurse), Michela Fox (Nurse Educator), Donna Drewett (Charge Nurse), and Kate Collett (Staff Nurse).

Ward 21 staff don new uniforms


Ward 21 nurses will be looking their best, while being more easily identifiable following the introduction of the nursing uniform.

After several months of planning, the uniforms are now available to Ward 21 nursing staff – a requirement for all new nurses, and optional for existing nurses. Previously, nurses working in the ward did not wear the official uniform, with staff now excited to join their colleagues from around the hospital. Positive feedback has already been received from staff, visitors and patients. Staff comments include noting an increased sense of pride and an improved professional image. Charge nurse Donna Drewett said that the introduction of the uniform makes it easier for patients and visitors to distinguish between staff.


Looking at upgrading that old TV? Need some work done on that rusty Holden? Or maybe you want to venture out for a well deserved coffee break.

Well don’t sweat, MidCentral DHB has you covered! Our staff benefit scheme, SMASCH, is full of employee discounts that are ideal for any occasion. Check out the scheme on the HR portal – you never know what you’ll find! We are constantly adding new businesses to our already massive database. If you know a business who may be interested in joining, or think your favourite restaurant needs to get involved, let us know and we may be able to approach them.

For more information on the SMASCH scheme or to recommend a business, contact Lisa Henson ext. 8852 or


Education Matters


Anatomy has been a corner stone of medical education for hundreds of years. It forms the basis of understanding physical examination, radiological investigations and surgical principles.

A good understanding of the subject is important for junior doctors who review radiological scans and perform varying levels of invasive procedures on a regular basis. As doctors, we all have an innate passion to not only learn but also teach. After talking to some like minded doctors, we came to form the Anatomy Club, aiming to build on current knowledge of clinical anatomy. An original group of six house officers were roped in to attending the initial session on the brachial plexus. Since then, we have had over ten sessions which an average of 6–10 trainee interns/house officers and registrars attended. We have now stuck with the program for nearly six months.

Unfortunately, many of us have moved to other pastures this year, but already we have others keen to carry on with this year’s classes. If you’re interested in joining the club, contact Vivek Meiyappan on An article by Dr Helen Winter

Enthusiastic participants using multimedia to further their learning.

Training Looking for education and training information? Visit the education and training calendar on the MDHB website: This page has the most up-to-date information including available, cancelled or rescheduled courses. Further help is available by contacting: Raewyn Knight, Education & Development Programme Administrator Human Resources, Education Centre Phone: 350 8205 Fax: 350 8010 Email:


Communication – it is the cornerstone of a functioning society. Even in the digital age, speech plays a major part in our daily lives and interactions. When an individual has trouble speaking clearly, it can interfere with the person’s ability to express his or her thoughts or to be understood – this may be very frustrating for them. So what is the best way to communicate with someone who has speech impairment? Below are some tips provided by the Health and Disability Commissioner. • Be relaxed and concentrate on what the person is saying. • Ask the person to repeat what was said if you do not understand something. Repeat it back to ensure you have got it right. • Be patient; take and give as much time as necessary to communicate effectively. • Ask questions that require only short answers, or a nod of the head when appropriate. • Avoid communication in noisy, public places. Talk in a private, quiet area whenever possible. • Do not speak for the person or attempt to finish his or her sentences. • Consider writing or using email as an alternative means of communicating if you are having difficulty understanding what a person is saying.


MidCentral News is th bi-monthly MidCentral e DH staff news magazine. B It is produc Communicatioed by the ns Unit: Team Leader Co mm unications Dennis Gedd is; Communic Officers, Ja ations Dempster an son Keall, Jordan d Sa rah Valentin and Graphic e; Co-ordinatorDesign and Print Jackie Tayl or. You can cont feedback or act us with any story ideas email: comm unications@ on midcentraldh


Staff Graduates


MidCentral DHB would like to say congratulations to all staff that recently graduated in one of the many ceremonies around the country. Staff who have contacted the Communications Unit with details of their success are listed here.




Jessica Robb

Masters in Management

Information Systems

Amanda Biggs-Hume

Masters in Nursing

Emergency Department

Alice Mazengarb

Postgraduate Diploma in Nursing


Pam Owen

Postgraduate Certificate in Primary Health Care Specialty Nursing

Public Health

Loren Smith

Bachelor of Nursing


Imogen Watson

Clinical Masters in Nursing

Acute stroke service

Debbie McCormick

Recertified as IBCLC

Women’s Health

Margaret Fisher

Recertified as IBCLC

Women’s Health

Maren Hanley

Qualified IBCLC

Women’s Health

Mary McGarvey

Qualified IBCLC

Women’s Health

Helen Hughes

Bachelor of Applied Science

Medical Imaging

Keiran Rea

Bachelor of Applied Science

Medical Imaging

Erin Loveridge

Bachelor of Applied Science

Medical Imaging

Catherine Murphy

Bachelor of Applied Science

Medical Imaging

Kathriona Benvie

Bachelor of Applied Science

Medical Imaging

Karmin Su

Postgraduate Certificate in Acupuncture

Physiotherapy Outpatient Dept

MDHB SUPPORTS VERY FIRST SAFE SLEEP DAY (From left) Registered Nurses Anna Dahlkamp, Angelique Walker, Janette Williams, and Robin Huxtable with the pepipod and wahakura which were on public display in the PN Hospital.


The nation’s inaugural Safe Sleep Day was celebrated with staff and visitors in December with a safe sleep promotion held in the hospital’s main foyer. Coordinated by registered nurse Janette Williams, a pepi-pod and wahakura were displayed for staff and visitors to view,along with a number of other resources to help inform them on safe sleeping practices.

Janette Williams helped organise the hospital’s first Safe Sleep Day with an information display.


Janette said that New Zealand sees far too many babies die from avoidable

causes, and therefore it is important to educate the community on safe sleep so families understand the facts. Janette is hoping the continuation of Safe Sleep Day in coming years will help ensure all families know what to do to protect their child while they sleep. For more information on Safe Sleep Day or to learn about safe sleep practices, contact Janette Williams on

WHAT IF? WHEN THE EARTH MOVES An article by Darren Horsley

RATTLIN’ BONES A SEISMIC UPDATE Living in New Zealand we all understand how serious earthquakes can be. January’s magnitude 6.2 earth quake centred in the Wairarapa reminds us that they are not just an abstract concept, they do happen. Due to New Zealand’s unpredictable nature, MDHB is pleased to begin the process of streng thening its potentially earthquake prone buildings.

Last month’s quake was a good one – MidCentral DHB responded immediately, activating the Emergency Operations Centre to meet the needs of the Hospital. Engineers carried out inspections and repairs where required, ensuring the hospital remained operational, and It goes without saying that ward staff were amazing during this event. As the dust settles, MidCentral DHB staff have been asking how to keep themselves and their families safe, while also being better prepared. A good starting point is your local authority and their emergency management website; it will contain key preparedness messaging and local information. Another great source is which identifies all likely New Zealand disaster scenarios. The site provides information on developing an Emergency Plan, putting together preparedness kits and how to identify how much food and water you will need.

There are two build ings affec ted; the old adm in building and single story section of the board office. Residents have been relocated to differe nt areas around the hospital to allow the strengthening proce ss to begin. The old admin building is currently undergoin g structural strengthening,with a complete refurbishme nt of the second floor taking place.The foundation area will be strengthened by enclosing existing window spaces. Demolition of the single story of the board office began on 27 January, and the old social club building will be upgraded and relocated in its place – housing the new MDHB board room. Temporary access to Board Office is now via Heretaunga Street. Ground work will soon begin in the area, including the development of car parking space. If you need to find a colleague for a well deser ved coffe e brea k and can’ t work out wher e they are now located, check out the relocation maps on the MDHB website. Go to the Staff Centre and under What’s New click “PN Hospital Staff Relocation Map” or use the link here.

Construction work going ahead in the old admin building.

Finally, get to know your neighbours. A strong community network makes for a resilient community – everyone brings different skills and strengths that can be used to support and protect each other. A work colleague expressed concerns about their child’s fear of earthquakes and wanted to know what they could do to help them overcome it. This fear is not uncommon and much research has been conducted post the Christchurch quake. For more information go to


The doctor will see you now – by video link


An exciting achievement on our own doorstep! The world’s first stroke patient treated from an international location via video link technology went ahead late last year, making use of a reciprocal agreement between MidCentral DHB and Wishaw Hospital in Scotland.


The agreement between the two hospitals means patients who present at Palmerston North Hospital’s Emergency Department with stroke symptoms in the middle of the night, receive diagnosis and treatment if needed from a competent stroke physician on the other side of the world – and vice versa. The agreement known as the ‘Telestroke Project’ sees MidCentral Health based medical registrars use video conferencing technology to consult with specialist stroke consultants in Scotland. The Scottish consultant examines the patient via the system, views CT images via PACS, and then discusses the case with the registrar to arrive at a treatment decision. This service model is intended to help tackle staff working restrictions and roster gaps between the hours of 10pm – 8am. This also takes advantage of the 12 hour time difference between the two countries.

Dr Anna Ranta who is heading the project said that the technology being trialed has the potential to improve the standard of care during night-time hours, as assessments are carried out by wide awake experts rather than staff who are woken from sleep. There are also potential cost savings for the DHB as fewer on-call physicians are required to maintain a local expert on-call roster. Telestroke is already widely used in the U.S., Europe, and Australia, but this is a world first for diagnosing and treating stroke patients from an international location. Currently there have been five cases where stroke patients have been treated by physicians at Scotland’s Wishaw Hospital, with the aim of treating five more before doctors at MidCentral Health video link with stroke patients in Scotland. For more information on the Telestroke Project, contact Dr Anna Ranta on

A world first – PN Hospital ED staff help carry out treatment plans to stroke patients under the direction of specialist stroke physician Dr Martin Whitehead at Scotland’s Wishaw Hospital.

February 2014 issue  
February 2014 issue