Latest Media Releases
Introducing This Page
This page introduces you to Media Releases publicised by the West Coast DHB. If there are any news you expected to find and they aren't shown here try our Media Releases Archive, or contact the West Coast DHB Communications Officer.
August 17, 2011
West Coast Exceeds Surgery Targets
More West Coasters than ever before had surgery performed at the DHB during the last financial year.
This is one of the key results that has become apparent as the figures from the 2010/11 financial year are processed.
The West Coast DHB carried out 111 more elective procedures than the Government's Improved access to elective surgery target in the last financial year. In addition to the elective (planned) surgery there was also an increase of over 20% in the number of acute (or emergency) operations performed.
"The ability to access surgery on the West Coast is vital to the health and wellbeing of the community and these numbers certainly reinforce the great service that Coasters enjoy", said DHB Chief Executive David Meates.
"Many more people are able to enjoy an improved quality of life and return to full employment as they have elective procedures such as hip and knee surgery and hernia repairs carried out. The efforts of staff throughout the West Coast health system who enabled the high numbers of surgical cases to be achieved is really appreciated."
Some concern was noted in an increase in the number of outpatient clinic cancellations over the past nine months.
Sick and bereavement leave along with Pike River and the Christchurch earthquakes resulted in the unplanned cancellation of a number of clinics. Given the small number of specialist staff on the West Coast we will always have problems arising from unexpected leave impacting on patients.
A newly implemented medical staff roster programme will allow much better planning of training and annual leave and is expected to reduce the number of future cancellations.
Challenges scheduling outpatient clinics are exacerbated when the numbers of patients who do not attend specialist appointments is factored in. In the past year almost 10% of patients didn't attend their appointments.
An extra 2000 people could have been seen if people had not missed their outpatient appointments. Having specialists sitting and waiting for patients who don't turn up is frustrating, particularly when they know of others who would readily use that appointment time.
Patients are reminded to read their outpatient letters carefully, ensuring that they confirm their availability for the appointment by phone and urgently contacting the DHB if they find that they are unable to make it.
For further information please contact
Community Liaison Officer
West Coast DHB
PO Box 387
Phone (DDI): (03) 769-7665
Mobile: 027 245-9595
Telehealth - Bringing Specialists to Rural Areas
News Release on One News, Saturday, 23rd March
The use of telemedicine on the West Coast is world leading and the DHB should be very proud of how well it works.
Lorelei Mason, health reporter for TVNZ, met with Liaison Paediatrician Dr John Garrett and filmed a story about the success of the Transalpine Paediatric Service. Lorelei shot footage of John in Christchurch talking to a family in Buller. There was also a TVNZ cameraman at Buller Health filming the family talking with John. The news item was aired on One News, Saturday 23 March 2013.
Work is underway on expanding the use of telemedicine across a range of other services at the West Coast DHB.