Health Matters EBOP March 2019

From the Chair Disability resource developed in the Eastern Bay shared nationwide Sally Webb - Chair, Bay of Plenty District Health Board In this issue of Health Matters, we are sharing with you our draft Māori Health Strategy Te Toi Ahorangi 2030. In the December 2018 Ministerial Letter of Expectations for all District Health Boards the Minister said, ‘’Achieving equity within the New Zealand Health system underpins all of my priorities. Maori as a population group experience the poorest health outcomes. As you consider equity within your district, there needs to be explicit focus on achieving equity for Maori across their life course.” Te Toi Ahorangi provides our local health system and tangata whenua with a clear direction for improving Māori health over the next decade. As Albert Einstein said “We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.” The vision of Te Toi Ahorangi asks us to embark on a diff erent journey together and this will take commitment and the courage to change what we do and how we do it. If we, here in the Bay of Plenty, are going to achieve the Bay of Plenty District Health Board’s vision of Healthy, thriving communities, Kia Momoho Te Hāpori ōranga we must uphold the aspirations of Te Toi Ahorangi so tangata whenua can fl ourish. New clinic brings better support for people taking multiple meds Geriatrician Dr Vicky Henstridge (left) and Pharmacist Adele Harrex at the new Outpatient Clinic providing better support for people taking multiple medications for multiple health conditions. Older people taking multiple medications for multiple health conditions can talk to a pharmacist and if needed be assessed by a Geriatrician at a new Outpatient Clinic at Tauranga Hospital. For many older people, polypharmacy (taking multiple medications for multiple conditions) is common. In New Zealand 35 percent of people aged 65+ are prescribed fi ve or more medications, and 8 percent of those aged 85+ are taking 11 or more medications at one time. More details about the draft Māori Health Strategy and a schedule of public hui are on the following pages. We are really keen to get people involved in understanding the aspirations and involved in making a diff erence for all people in the Bay of Plenty. Supporting people to get well, stay well and be well is at the heart of our health service. As you are no doubt aware, there is a measles outbreak in Canterbury and there have been confi rmed cases in the North Island as well. This is an avoidable disease that can have catastrophic outcomes. Just last week I was reading a Facebook article by children’s author Roald Dahl about how his seven you old daughter caught measles and died from complications in 1962. Please check your immunisation status and that of your children. Immunisation is our best protection. Naku te rourou nau te rourou ka ora ai te iwi With your basket and my basket the people will live Sally Webb “Taking multiple medications may be benefi cial for quality of life and staying well, as long as this is carefully managed. Research shows 58 percent of people on fi ve or more medications will suff er an adverse side eff ect. There’s also a higher risk of falls and other age related conditions that can lead to hospitalisation. “Our new Outpatient Clinic allows people to bring along family or friends and spend up to an hour with a pharmacist discussing all their medications, prescribed and non-prescribed, their benefi ts, potential side eff ects and possible changes. At the same time, they can be seen by a Geriatrician who may add to the recommendations, arrange appropriate investigations or further review,” says BOPDHB Geriatrician Dr Vicky Henstridge. The Bay of Plenty has a high and growing population of older adults. In the Western Bay people can access specialist pharmacist advice and support about their medications through Medwise. “The Outpatient Clinic’s designed to complement those existing services. People do have their medications reviewed by their GP, often in collaboration with the excellent Medwise service. However, as our population ages, the need for reviews is increasing, and so too is the need for input from a Geriatrician.” Although the clinic is in its early phase and processes are still being fi ne-tuned, Vicky says ultimately the clinic’s been set up to support older people to stay well and improve their quality of life. She says the BOPDHB will be monitoring the clinic’s progress and depending on its success, we may look at developing a similar clinic at the Outpatients Department at Whakatāne Hospital. For further information including referral criteria please contact Cheryl Shearer (centre) surrounded by those who contributed to the teaching resource and their families. A teaching resource developed at the Bay of Plenty District Health Board designed to improve the way health staff communicate with patients living with disabilities, is being profi led by the Health Quality & Safety Commission, and shared nationwide. Established in 2010, the Commission works across the health and disability sector to improve the quality and safety of services for all people. The teaching resource titled Do you really see me or just my disability? tells the stories of seven Bay of Plenty people living with disabilities (tāngata whaikaha). The stories are shared from their own perspective, and in the case of two who have passed away, their families. Whakatāne based BOPDHB Quality and Patient Safety Co-ordinator Cheryl Shearer says she chose to develop this resource after dealing with patients and families with concerns about their medical care and how staff communication impacted on their patient journey. “There are touchpoints in every patient’s journey that have an impact on how we as health staff make them feel. The information provided by these people in this resource has identifi ed themes that we can all learn from. “These people have very diff erent life experiences but what ties their stories together is a desire to be treated with dignity and respect. Seemingly simple things like greeting a person and asking them if they need assistance, before doing anything else, are really important.” Dr Chris Walsh, Director of Partners in Care at the Commission says that listening to patients’ experiences of care helps us to understand where improvements can be made. “We strive for a world-class and patient- centred health care and disability support system in New Zealand. Listening to the patient experience and using patient stories to inform improvements, is a key part of this.” You can view the resource online by searching Do you really see me or just my disability at Protected together - make sure you and your family are immune to measles “With recent cases of measles in New Zealand, now is a very good time to check that you and your whānau are up to date with immunisations and immune to measles,” says Dr Neil de Wet, Medical Offi cer of Health for Toi Te Ora Public Health. People born before 1969 are considered to be immune because measles used to be quite common, but anyone born from 1969 onwards who is unsure if they have been immunised should check with their doctor. “Contact your family doctor or practice nurse if you or your child needs to be immunised – it’s never too late to catch up,” says Dr de Wet. The vaccine that protects against measles is the MMR (measles, mumps and rubella) vaccine. “The MMR provides very eff ective protection against measles and is completely free for children and adults. MMR is given in two doses, usually at 15 months and then four years of age, as part of the routine childhood immunisations but can be given later to anyone who has missed these vaccinations,” says Dr de Wet. Measles is highly infectious and is spread from person to person through the air by breathing, sneezing or coughing. Just being in the same Protected together – measles is very contagious, so we protect one another when we get immunised. Make sure you are immune to measles and so protect you, your whānau and your community. room as someone with measles can lead to infection if you are not immune. “The fi rst early symptoms of measles are fever, runny nose, sore red eyes and cough. After three to fi ve days a red, blotchy rash appears on the face and head and then spreads down the body,” says Dr de Wet. Measles can be serious with around one in ten people who get measles needing to be hospitalised. “If you think you or someone in your family may have measles, stay at home and phone your doctor so that they can make arrangements to see you and assess you safely and without infecting other people, or call Healthline on 0800 611 116 for advice,” advises Dr de Wet. For more information about measles visit the Toi Te Ora Public Health website at: