COVID-19 (Coronavirus)

Information about changes at hospitals and health centres can be found at www.cdhb.health.nz/covid19

CEO Update – Monday 3 August 2020

In this edition of the CEO Update

CEO David Meates outlines some of the steps and key dates leading up to the move into Christchurch Hospital Hagley later this year. He also shares the innovation in health and technology on show at last week’s Techie Brekkie as part of TechWeek 2020.

This issue also looks at how teamwork ensured ICU was ready for COVID-19 patients; a policy change that would improve the health of Kiwi kids' teeth; a fond farewell to some long-serving colleagues; health technology, and much more.

You can read the Canterbury DHB CEO Update in two different formats:

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Health News

A nationwide study was released today evaluating the link between community water fluoridation and the experience of severe tooth decay in four-year-old New Zealand children

Kiwi kids are suffering unnecessarily from severe tooth decay that could be prevented, according to research published today in JAMA Paediatrics, the highest-ranking journal of Paediatrics, Perinatology and Child Health in the world.

The nation-wide study, evaluating the link between community water fluoridation and the experience of severe tooth decay in four-year-old New Zealand children, analysed the B4 School Check screening programme data of 275,000 children over a five-year period from 2011 to 2016.

The findings show children who didn’t have a fluoridated water supply were 20% more likely to have severe tooth decay.

“Modern dentistry can only do so much to tackle this issue and by the time children receive dental care it’s often too late to save their baby teeth, which then affects the development of adult teeth,” says Dr Martin Lee, Canterbury’s Community Dental Service Clinical Director. “Community water fluoridation is the safest and most cost-effective preventative strategy we have to protect the teeth of all Kiwi kids, and the teeth of all New Zealanders generally.”

Nearly one in seven (15%) of four-year-olds who had had a B4 School Check were found to be severely affected by tooth decay. While the rates of severe decay were much higher for Māori and Pacific children and children living in deprived areas, no-one was immune – 7% of NZ/European children and children living in the least deprived areas had severe tooth decay.

Four-year-olds with severe decay frequently need a general anaesthetic for their dental treatment and many of those on hospital waiting lists have chronic toothache and abscesses.

New Zealand has a long-term national policy supporting community water fluoridation, yet only 54% of the population currently receives it. A Bill proposing moving responsibility for this from Councils to District Health Boards, introduced in 2016, has not been progressed since a health select committee report in 2017.

Lead author of the study, Philip Schluter, Professor of Population Health at the University of Canterbury (UC), says the burden on the dental health of Kiwi kids is not shared equally across the country.

“The research shows the current lack of widespread community water fluoridation disproportionately affects children living in the most deprived areas, with Māori and Pacific children more likely to experience worse oral health than pakeha, even after accounting for key sociodemographic factors,” says Professor Schluter.

“We hope that the real-world evidence provided in this research will be used in evidence-based policy-making to combat the woeful oral health burdens and neglect carried unnecessarily by so many children in New Zealand.”

The research was undertaken by a team of legal, public health, dental, water quality, and geospatial specialists: Professor Philip Schluter, University of Canterbury (Population Health expert); Dr Martin Lee (Canterbury’s Community Dental Service Clinical Director); Helen Atkins (Director of Atkins Holm Majurey, New Zealand’s leading specialist environmental law firm; and President-elect, Water New Zealand); Mr Barry Mattingley (Senior Scientist in drinking water quality at ESR, a New Zealand Crown Research Institute); and Dr Matthew Hobbs, University of Canterbury (Senior Lecturer in Public Health with specialist geospatial expertise).

Key points/findings

  • Study of 275,000 Kiwi children over a five-year period (2011–2016) found:
    • Children in areas without a fluoridated water supply were 20% more likely to have severe tooth decay
    • Māori and Pacific children living in the most deprived areas were 8 and 12 times (respectively) to have severe tooth decay
    • 7% of NZ/European children and children living in the least deprived areas had severe tooth decay
    • Nearly one in seven (15%) of four-year-olds who had had a B4 School Check were found to be severely affected by tooth decay.
  • New Zealand has a long-term national policy supporting community water fluoridation, yet only 54% of the population receives it.
  • A Bill proposing moving responsibility for community water fluoridation from Councils to District Health Boards, introduced in 2016, has not been progressed since a health select committee report in 2017.

ENDS

In this edition of the CEO Update

CEO David Meates highlights recent research into the health of Canterbury kids’ teeth and looks at last week’s public lecture with Canterbury clinicians discussing the latest on COVID-19.

This issue also looks at the local expert advising on the development of a COVID-19 vaccine; celebrates the great work by Personal Protective Equipment champions; highlights the value of Emergency Department physiotherapists; outlines some of the technology gains from COVID-19, and much more.

You can read the Canterbury DHB CEO Update in two different formats:

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In this edition of the CEO Update

CEO David Meates shares another significant milestone on Canterbury DHB’s journey to better integrated health care, with the one millionth clinical note created in Cortex. He also welcomes Greg Hamilton to his new role as General Manager Specialist Mental Health Services.

This issue also promotes the positive impact of the Maternity Assessment Unit, shares the adventures of Harry the Burwood Hospital cat, looks at the success of remote consultations during COVID-19 lockdown, celebrates how the online Sparklers wellbeing resource is making a difference to Kiwi kids, and much more.

You can read the Canterbury DHB CEO Update in two different formats:

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In this edition of the CEO Update

CEO David Meates talks about what we are doing to identify ways to improve the way we work and deliver the changes needed to ensure we can continue to do the best for our patients and realise savings targets.

This issue also farewells a retiring haematologist who chose a career in medicine following an experience in Papua New Guinea, tells the tale of a technician's time in a managed quarantine hotel, highlights the work of a registered nurse who will soon be retiring after 50 years of working in the health system, and much more.

You can read the Canterbury DHB CEO Update in two different formats:

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In this edition of the CEO Update…

CEO David Meates celebrates our Acute Demand Management Service, which began 20 years ago this month, detailing how it set the platform for the integrated health system we have today.

This issue also covers the work that happened during Alert Levels 3 and 4 around acute plans for people who likely needed emergency or after-hours medical care, highlights the welcome the Southern Cancer Network team received from team at Te Aho o Te Kahu after the two organisations merged, and more.

You can read the Canterbury DHB CEO Update in two different formats:

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ISG Enterprise Devices Team Leader Rahul Mukherjee and Chief Digital Officer Stella Ward show off the DHB's ElectroClave

Canterbury DHB’s Information Services Group (ISG) is now able to safely disinfect devices such as tablets and cell phones when they are returned to ISG from wards and clinical units.

In a COVID-19 world, good hygiene has become top of many people's minds. Mobile electronic devices such as iPads and mobile phones can carry harmful germs and can act as inadvertent ‘spreaders’ of infectious diseases. While mobile devices need regular cleaning, it isn’t as straight forward as picking up a disinfectant wipe to clean a device, given that moisture can damage electronic equipment.

This is where the ElectroClave comes in. It uses UV-C (short-wavelength ultraviolet) light for 360-degree sterilisation, killing 99.9 percent of pathogens. Its cooling system is also designed to prevent devices from being overheated. It’s already used across healthcare in several other countries.

Canterbury was the first DHB in New Zealand to trial the ElectroClave. Following its successful use, it is now the first organisation in New Zealand to be using it.

“We know that COVID-19 virus can survive on hard surfaces for up to 72 hours. This was a risk that we needed to mitigate to keep our staff safe and provide them with something they can use to do their job safely,” ISG Enterprise Devices Team Leader Rahul Mukherjee said.

How does it work?

First, the device is wiped down to remove any excess oil or dust. The device is then placed within the ElectroClave unit with the screen facing down on one of the shelves. The length of the cycle can be customised anywhere from a 60-second rapid cycle up to six minutes, depending on the size of the device.

“Since the introduction of the ElectroClave unit, we have adjusted our processes to ensure when devices come back to ISG from clinical areas to be repaired, we clean them in the ElectroClave before we start working on them. It gives our staff the assurance they’re working on devices that have been cleaned and cleared of any pathogens that could be passed on from the devices,” Rahul says.  

Chief Digital Officer, Stella Ward is impressed by the unit’s ability to sanitise hard-to-clean devices, and charge them at the same time. “From both a Health IT and infection control perspective, we have gained efficiencies in the way we manage our devices such as tablets and smart phones,” Stella says.

ENDS

Is yours the next great innovative HealthTech idea or solution?

Challenge aims to confirm Christchurch as NZ’s centre of health innovation 

Ōtautahi Christchurch aims to become the home of health tech innovation in New Zealand with the HealthTech Supernode Challenge, opening Monday 29 June.

With a total prize pool across multiple categories valued at over $340,000, there are plenty of reasons to enter the HealthTech Supernode Challenge. This includes entry into a virtual pre-accelerator programme, the potential for startup investment, a Canterbury District Health Board validation contract, and an exclusive invitation to a further startup incubator programme.  

Most importantly, all Challenge finalists will receive extensive profile, new networks and exposure to one of NZ’s most prolific health innovation ecosystems.  

The nationwide challenge, sponsored by ChristchurchNZ, is open to anyone with a healthtech innovation or idea – from students and startups to researchers, and healthcare professionals. 

The aim of the Challenge is to identify and generate commercially viable solutions that address real healthcare problems focusing on the Aged Care sector and Rural New Zealand. There is also an Open category to ensure no innovation is left uncovered.

Applications opened 29 June 2020 and will close on 16 August, with finalists announced 19 August. Anyone in New Zealand can apply.  Visit healthtechchallenge.co.nz for more information.

Up to 20 finalists will embark on an intensive, six-week virtual pre-accelerator programme to support teams through a market validation process that will rigorously test their idea.

The top finalists emerging from the pre-accelerator will present to a panel of experts at a Demo Night, to be held on 22 October at Manawa, in the heart of Te Papa Hauora Christchurch Health Precinct. Judges include Microbiologist and Media Commentator, Dr. Siouxsie Wiles and Ian Town, New Zealand’s Chief Science Advisor at the Ministry of Health. 

The HealthTech Supernode Challenge is delivered by the Ministry of Awesome and the University of Canterbury’s Centre for Entrepreneurship with support from ChristchurchNZ, KiwiNet, and Ryman Healthcare. 

Healthtech is a growth sector for Christchurch and an area of existing strength, with the city looking for opportunities to continue to attract and grow talent, business and innovation.

Joanna Norris CEO ChristchurchNZ said there is no city better placed than Christchurch to host the Challenge.

“Ōtautahi Christchurch is home to Te Papa Hauora, a world-class Health Precinct which integrates research and innovation with education and community wellbeing, pair this with the talent coming out of the tertiaries and a thriving tech ecosystem and we’ve got the perfect testbed to challenge the status quo and find new ways to address the biggest health issues facing the globe.

I have no doubt we’ll see some very competitive submissions coming through with the potential to drive the city’s economic recovery and create new high-value jobs.’’

ENDS

CEO UpdateIn this edition of the CEO Update…

CEO David Meates reflects on a visit by the Rt Hon Jacinda Ardern to our Community and Public Health offices last Thursday, where she acknowledged the critical role that public health plays in keeping our communities well. He also talks about our financial situation, following media coverage of the deficit last week.

This issue also covers the hard work of our Infection Prevention and Control Team in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, how knitting during break times has brought the Physiotherapy department together, promotes a health tech innovation challenge, and more.

You can read the Canterbury DHB CEO Update in two different formats:

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In this edition of the CEO Update…

It’s National Volunteer Week and CEO David Meates warmly welcomes back our team of volunteers across the organisation. They have been staying home and staying safe during the COVID-19 alert levels, but are now returning to their roles to the delight of staff, patients and visitors alike. David also shares how Canterbury DHB's carbon footprint will be almost halved and our coal consumption will drop to zero over the next 18 months

This issue also looks at how the Dialysis Service pivoted during COVID-19 lockdown to keep caring for dialysis patients, celebrates the 25th anniversary of the rural mental health team, acknowledges the incredible contribution of former Director of Nursing Older Persons' Health and Rehabilitation Diana Gunn after 30 years with Canterbury DHB, and much more.

You can read the Canterbury DHB CEO Update in two different formats:

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The DHB's visitor policy has again been updated as we navigate our way through COVID-19 alert level three

Changes have been made to the DHB's visitor policy

Please attribute comment to Dr Sue Nightingale, Chief Medical Officer, Canterbury DHB:

Under Alert Level 1 Canterbury DHB has begun to relax some of its visitor restrictions that were in place at its facilities under other Alert Levels as a precaution, to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

The public can expect to see fewer restrictions in place in terms of physical distancing requirements and visiting hours. We have already stopped screening people at the entrances to our facilities, however we encourage people to keep a record of where they go and when. This can be done by ‘checking in’ via the QR code at the entrances to our facilities, or keeping a diary note of where they go and when. This information is useful if we were to have a case and needed to advise the public.   

The main changes are to the visiting hours at Christchurch Hospital.

For most areas at Christchurch Hospital public visiting was previously condensed to between 3pm and 9pm. Visiting hours have now been extended to between 11am – 1pm and 3pm – 8pm.

There is still only one visitor at a time permitted for each patient, but it can be a different person each time. All people attending an outpatient appointment can have one support person with them. Parents and caregivers can be present in paediatric areas as normal.

There have also been some minor changes to visiting arrangements at our maternity facilities.

For women staying at Christchurch Women’s Hospital/Rangiora Health Hub maternity/Lincoln Maternity/Ashburton Maternity, partners can visit from 8am to 10pm. All other visiting is from 11am to 1pm and then 3pm to 8pm.

Burwood Hospital visiting hours are now 11am to 7pm daily.

Full details of further changes to visiting at other Canterbury DHB facilities are available on our website.

People should not come visiting a hospital if they are sick or have any flu-like symptoms. People should also keep up the good hygiene practices such as washing and thoroughly drying hands, and using hand gel where it is provided.

Anyone with symptoms of COVID-19 or flu-like symptoms should phone for advice. Either your own General Practice team or Healthline’s COVID-19 line 0800 358 5453.

The symptoms of COVID-19 are similar to common illnesses such as a cold or influenza. You may have one or more of the following:

  • a cough
  • a high temperature (at least 38˚C)
  • shortness of breath
  • a sore throat
  • sneezing and runny nose
  • temporary loss of smell.

ENDS

Medsalv's Oliver Hunt and Chris Gillan from the Sustainable Business Network

Medsalv's Oliver Hunt and Chris Gillan from the Sustainable Business Network

How Via Innovations is helping keep it local and supporting a more sustainable post-COVID business environment

While people managed life under COVID Alert Levels 3 and 4, the health sector was under huge pressure and the demands being made of the health system were unprecedented.

Canterbury and West Coast DHB’s Chief Digital Officer and Executive Sponsor for Via Innovations, Stella Ward says it is during such times of extraordinary stress that people are most likely to think outside the square because ‘what we usually do’ no longer applies.

“When a health-related event as disruptive as a pandemic hits the health sector, it is a time for the creatives, for the innovators and those best able to adapt quickly. For them, a major system-shock like COVID-19 also creates new opportunities.”

“Take for example Medsalv, a business that was developed specifically to reduce waste and stretch the health dollar further. Add that Medsalv is New Zealand-based, and that it reduces reliance on now unstable overseas supply chains – and you have a winning formula for these challenging COVID-19 times.”

After proving the concept and delivering savings and reduced waste as promised, Medsalv has now secured a long-term contract with Canterbury DHB, through Via Innovations.

Via Innovations is a specialist business unit within the DHB that helps people with health innovations develop viable products or services, and provides the expertise and investment needed to commercialise them.

Via’s Innovation Director, Anya Hornsey, says that any new device or service that will be used in a hospital environment requires detailed planning and robust testing to ensure appropriate safety, quality and performance standards will be met.

“Medsalv continue to deliver on their promise of reducing both costs and waste, without compromising the high quality and safety standards required of medical devices,” says Anya.

Medsalv’s founder and CEO, Oliver Hunt, says the business initially targeted high volume, high cost, non-invasive single-use devices which can be cleaned and tested using processes comparable to or even more stringent than those used by the original manufacturer. One example is Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) compression sleeves that are used in conjunction with reusable pumps to prevent DVT.

“Our focus has always been on reducing waste and the cost to the health system by getting more uses from each device – and at the end of their usable lives, ensuring they are separated into recyclable components, so much less waste eventually ends up in landfill,” Oliver says.

Savings to date are fast approaching $100,000 for Canterbury DHB, and Medsalv has more recently been working with New Zealand’s leading private hospitals, such as MercyAscot, to deliver more sustainable healthcare. As some items have been reused as many as six to eight times, the quantity of new products ordered has reduced by the same volume.

That also means tonnes of used products that would once have gone to landfill have instead been recycled – a win-win for the health system and the environment.

People are still finding some items are in short supply, or available only at a premium price, and the fact that everything is taking much longer to deliver, especially products that come from overseas. Businesses are having the same experience.

However, you can’t get more local than Medsalv – who offer the same product at a reduced cost, generate less waste, and are helping break New Zealand’s dependence on overseas medical equipment suppliers.

“Medsalv also provides jobs here in New Zealand, rather than halfway around the world – and any investment in Medsalv – like the Waste Minimisation Grant made by the Ministry for the Environment in 2019 – stays right here in New Zealand. In the current COVID-19 business climate the benefits of reusing items increase – we are ensuring our supplies of scarce or unavailable items last longer. Where items have gone up in price, the savings are even greater than before.”

Although based on a winning idea, with the drive to make it work, Medsalv credits its success to support from early backers including Canterbury DHB’s Via Innovations Unit. Via Innovations provided commercialisation expertise, alongside other supporters including the University of Canterbury, the Sustainable Initiatives Fund/Trust, Canterbury DHB, and MercyAscot hospitals.

“These organisations had the vision to support us getting our concept off the ground. I’m extremely proud that we’ve been able to deliver on our promises of reduced cost and waste, and to have created significant savings for each hospital we’re working with,” Oliver says.                                                                                 

To find out more visit Medsalv.com

Learn more about Canterbury DHB’s Via Innovations Unit

To read about other devices that can be re-used or recycled visit Commonly reprocessed medical devices

ENDS

In this edition of the CEO Update…

CEO David Meates highlights the collaborative efforts of our Information Services Group, St John and Orion to integrate different software systems, making the handover of paper copies of Ambulance Care Summary notes a thing of the past.

This issue also congratulates the TransAlpine Communications team for being awarded the PR In-House Team of the Year at this year's PRINZ Awards, shares how the DHB is reusing what were formerly single-use items, details a $600,000 gift agreement from the Wayne Francis Charitable Trust which will ensure that treatment offered to children and young people with rare forms of cancer is equivalent to that offered in Australia, and much more.

You can read the Canterbury DHB CEO Update in two different formats:

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THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.
Health warning  – algal bloom in Lake Pegasus

The health warning in place for Lake Pegasus has now been removed

Canterbury District Health Board’s Community and Public Health unit has lifted its algal bloom health warning issued for Lake Pegasus. The warning was put in place in December 2019.

Recent water testing at Lake Pegasus has shown the quantity of potentially toxic blue-green algae (planktonic cyanobacteria) in the lake has decreased and concentrations are now below the levels that are of concern to public health.

Canterbury Medical Officer of Health Dr Cheryl Brunton says sampling of Lake Pegasus will continue on a monthly basis.

“The public will be informed if testing shows that concentrations have increased and there is a risk to public health again,” Dr Brunton says.

Facts about cyanobacteria:

  • The algae occur naturally but can increase rapidly during warmer months.
  • Algal blooms are caused by a combination of nutrients in the water (such as nitrogen and phosphorus), and favourable weather conditions (e.g. increased temperature, calm days).
  • If the water is cloudy, discoloured, or has small globules suspended in it, avoid all contact.
  • Not all cyanobacterial blooms are visible to the naked eye and toxins can persist after the blooms disappear.
  • Cyanobacterial concentrations can change quickly with changing environmental conditions (e.g. wind). If a health warning is in place avoid contact with the water.
  • If a warning is in place, people and animals should not drink the water from the lake at any time, even boiled water.
  • Exposure to an algal bloom can cause skin rashes, nausea, stomach cramps, tingling and numbness around the mouth and fingertips. If you experience any of these symptoms visit your doctor immediately and please let your doctor know if you have had contact with lake water when there is a health warning in place.

For further information visit:

https://www.lawa.org.nz/explore-data/canterbury-region/

Or contact Community and Public Health on (03) 364 1777:

https://www.cph.co.nz/your-health/recreational-water/

For more information about Mahinga Kai:

https://www.cph.co.nz/wp-content/uploads/saf0112.pdf

ENDS

In this edition of the CEO Update…

CEO David Meates reflects on some of the beneficial behavioural changes we’ve seen in our health system due to COVID-19, such as an increased awareness of hand hygiene, as well as a reduction in the spread of flu/influenza-like illnesses. However, he reminds staff not to become complacent as we enter flu season, and encourages the 29 percent of staff who haven’t yet had their free flu shot to consider doing so.

This issue also highlights the changes a number of dental services made to ensure emergency dental care could still take place under Alert Levels 4 and 3, such as using technology to connect with patients; announces the launch iSupport, an additional way for staff to log their information technology requests; congratulates first year House Surgeon David Nair for being awarded the Pasifika Medical Association’s Papali’i Dr Semisi Ma’ia’i University of Otago Scholarship; and much more.

You can read the Canterbury DHB CEO Update in two different formats:

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THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.

Health warning  – algal bloom in Lake Pegasus

Community and Public Health have issued a health warning for the collection of shellfish in a specific area near Port Levy

Canterbury DHB’s Community and Public Health unit has issued a health warning advising the public not to collect or consume shellfish harvested from between Sumner Head and East Head at Okains Bay on Banks Peninsula, including Lyttelton Harbour.

This follows a biotoxin notification from the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI): https://www.mpi.govt.nz/travel-and-recreation/fishing/shellfish-biotoxin-alerts/#lytlleton

Canterbury Medical Officer of Health, Dr Anna Stevenson says routine tests on shellfish samples taken from Port Levy have shown levels of diarrhetic shellfish poisoning toxins above the safe limit of 0.16 mg/kg set by MPI.  Anyone eating shellfish from this area is potentially at risk of illness.

“Mussels, oysters, tuatua, pipi, toheroa, cockles, scallops, catseyes, kina (sea urchin) and all other bivalve shellfish should not be eaten.

Dr Stevenson warns that cooking shellfish does not remove the toxin.

“Symptoms of diarrhetic shellfish poisoning typically appear within half an hour and can last for 24 hours.”

Symptoms may include:

  • Diarrhoea
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Abdominal cramps

Dr Stevenson says Pāua, crab and crayfish may still be eaten if the gut has been completely removed prior to cooking, as toxins accumulate in the gut. If the gut is not removed its contents could contaminate the meat during the cooking process.

“If anyone becomes ill after eating shellfish from an area where a public health warning has been issued, phone your usual General Practice team 24/7 and they can advise you what to do and where you can receive care if required. If it’s an emergency phone 111.

“You are also advised to contact Community and Public on (03) 364 1777 and keep any leftover shellfish in case it can be tested,” says Dr Stevenson.

MPI will continue to monitor toxin levels and any changes will be communicated accordingly.

For more information and a map of the affected area check:

https://www.mpi.govt.nz/travel-and-recreation/fishing/shellfish-biotoxin-alerts/

ENDS

Unite against COVID-19

People visiting Canterbury DHB facilities will soon be able to sign in using QR Codes on posters for use with the NZ COVID Tracer App

Canterbury DHB is creating QR codes for use with the NZ COVID Tracer App and you will be able to find posters at the entrances of many Canterbury DHB facilities.

If you have the app installed on your phone or device, please scan the QR code each time you enter one of our facilities. This helps make contact tracing easier.

Under Alert Level 2 we are still applying visitor restrictions at all our facilities as a precaution, to help stop the spread of COVID-19

We also ask you to check in ‘manually' at the main entrance each time you come.

We apologise for the time this takes, but here’s why we need you to stop on your way in:

  • We need to check you are well – we will ask a few key questions about your health and the places you have visited recently. 
  • To help with contact tracing – because not everyone will have the NZ COVID Tracer App installed.
  • To register your name as designated visitor for a specific person – to reduce the number of people passing through our facilities.

To keep up to date with current visitor restrictions, visit Canterbury DHB's COVID-19 visitor restrictions.

For the latest on New Zealand’s progress on keeping out COVID-19 visit Unite Against COVID-19.

In this edition of the CEO Update…

CEO David Meates highlights an important milestone in managing the COVID-19 outbreak: there are no longer any known active cases of COVID-19 in Canterbury, while acknowledging the losses we and our community experienced with the deaths of 12 residents from Rosewood Rest Home and Hospital. He also provides a snapshot into Canterbury COVID-19 cases, such as how many cases we have had, where they were, and how many patients were assessed in our dedicated COVID-19 ward. Additionally, he congratulates the Queen's Birthday Honours recipients from Canterbury who have worked to support and improve the health of Cantabrians.

This issue also highlights the mammoth amount of work that the Canterbury Health Laboratories team has put into our COVID-19 response, testing 1549 samples for COVID-19 on its busiest day; provides an update on progress of the Rolleston Health Hub and Rangiora Health Hub; thanks and farewells Shona Mackintosh, who has worked in mental health for the previous 53 years; and much more.

You can read the Canterbury DHB CEO Update in two different formats:

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Cantabs are being reminded to come to their DHB appointments

Canterbury DHB is well on its way to reinstating planned care – meaning we’re continuing to reschedule appointments, based on clinical priority, that were postponed as the country went into lockdown to slow the spread of COVID-19.  

Canterbury DHB Chief Medical Officer, Dr Sue Nightingale says at Alert Level 2 the risk from COVID-19 is greatly reduced and we have resumed many of our services with additional strict precautions to keep everybody safe. The DHB anticipated being at 85 percent of capacity within four weeks of coming out of lockdown – and has already achieved that goal.

“Now we are confident that we can provide care without exposing people to the risk of getting COVID-19 in our facilities, we want to get back on track with people’s care plans as soon as we can – but as we make new appointments for you, we really need you to attend and allow us to pick up where we left off with your care without further delay.

“For some people the way we provide that care has changed, so that they can still receive care when and where they need it. More consultations will occur over the phone or by video link for example, to avoid unnecessary person-to-person contact.

“However, there are many circumstances when we do need to see you in person – for some time to come we will only make that kind of appointment where it’s essential. When you do come to your appointment you will find that a few other things have changed too,” says Dr Nightingale.

To meet Alert Level 2 physical distancing requirements, we continue to restrict the number of visitors entering the premises and people who enter the hospital have their details recorded for contact tracing purposes.

“We apologise if these measures cause any inconvenience, but please remember our priority, as always, is to provide you with the best possible care while keeping you safe,” Dr Nightingale says.

If you get a message about a new outpatient appointment or in relation to planned surgery, it’s important you attend. These appointments are part of helping you stay well or recover faster. If you have any difficulty attending, please let us know and we will do our best to work with you to find a more suitable time.

It also helps others and our health system if you let us know in advance if you can’t make your appointment – we can then give that timeslot to someone else and so make sure we can make the most of the clinical time available.

In summary:

  • We are making new appointments to resume people’s planned care.
  • For the sake of your health, please make sure you do attend – and let us know if you can’t.
  • Expect to see and experience increased infection prevention measures in all our facilities for some time to come – this is to protect and reassure everybody.
  • If you have cold or flu-like symptoms, please call ahead of your appointment to ask for advice. 

Additional information – how we are keeping people safe

Besides reducing face-to-face appointments to those that are really necessary, other precautions include:

  • Increased cleaning, especially toilets, food areas and surfaces that many people touch such as door handles and hand rails, furniture, public phones etc.
  • Restricting the number of entrances to DHB facilities to ensure everyone who arrives is checked to ensure they are well.
  • Recording all visitor and support persons’ details in case we need to do contact tracing later.
  • Reducing the number of people in clinics at any one time so people can stay far enough apart in waiting rooms.
  • Having information and warnings on display where appropriate – for example the physical distancing requirements.
  • Providing hand sanitiser in prominent places, including entrances and in wards or treatment areas and asking people to wash or sanitise their hands.

ENDS

In this edition of the CEO Update…

CEO David Meates shares the good news that planned surgeries are back up to about 82 percent of pre-COVID-19 capacity across the system. He looks at how Specialist Mental Health Services continued to provide care throughout the lockdown, and how our laboratories scaled up to meet the demand for testing early on in the pandemic.

This issue also looks at the work being done to support and grow more Canterbury DHB-led research for our community, shares the progress on implementation of the Maternity Early Warning System in several primary community maternity units, outlines activities to mark World Smokefree Day on 31 May, and much more.

You can read the Canterbury DHB CEO Update in two different formats:

View on issuu.com Download PDF (5MB)

In this edition of the CEO Update…

CEO David Meates welcomes back the staff who, until now, have been working from home. He highlights some of the silver linings that have come from this pandemic to date, particularly the benefits to patients and staff who have been communicating online and over the phone for outpatient consultations. He also commends the work done by those in our Community Based Assessment Centres, as well as those who helped set them up.

This issue also pays tribute to engineer Tony Blacker, who worked for Canterbury DHB for 46 years; congratulates two new staff for their appointment at the Canterbury Air Retrieval Service; the arrival of a new molecular analyser at Canterbury Health Laboratories to test for a range of viruses, and much more.

You can read the Canterbury DHB CEO Update in two different formats:

View on issuu.com Download PDF (5MB)

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.

The DHB's visitor policy has again been updated as we navigate our way through COVID-19 alert level three

Changes have been made to the DHB's visitor policy

Please attribute comment to Dr Sue Nightingale, Incident Controller, Canterbury DHB Emergency Coordination Centre

Canterbury DHB has made changes to its visitor restrictions under Alert Level 2. The key changes are at Christchurch Hospital where visiting hours have changed. 

For most areas at Christchurch Hospital public visiting was previously from 11am – 1pm, then again from 3:00pm – 8:00pm. This week we condensed visiting hours at Christchurch Hospital and under Alert Level 2 our new visiting hours are between 3pm and 9pm until further notice. 

The busiest time in the hospital for clinicians is usually between 8am and 2:30pm when it’s a hive of activity and we want to keep that time visitor-free wherever possible. Our current facilities are not spacious and having fewer people around at that time means staff have the space to observe physical distancing when not providing direct patient care.

There is still one nominated person per patient for the duration of their stay. Charge nurse managers can make exceptions on compassionate grounds.

All visitors still need to be checked in at main entrances and contact details of all visitors are recorded on arrival.

At Burwood Hospital all visitors need to be checked in at the main entrance on Burwood Road, and two nominated people can visit for the duration of a patient’s stay but they must visit at different times during the visiting hours of 11am – 7pm.

There is no change to visiting at Christchurch Women’s Hospital under Alert Level 2 with women in labour allowed two support people for the duration of her labour and birth.

Full details of further changes to visiting at other Canterbury DHB facilities are available on our website.

As always, please don’t visit if you’re unwell and remember the usual public health precautions such as hand hygiene and physical distancing (wherever possible stay two metres away from people you don’t know, and one metre away from people you do know). 

ENDS

Cantabrians are being asked to get a sexual health check up before breaking out of their bubbles

Canterbury DHB’s sexual health team is urging anyone who’s bursting to break out of their bubble to connect with someone in a more intimate way, to get themselves checked out.

Clinical Director of Canterbury DHB’s sexual health service, Dr Ed Coughlan says the enforced period of lockdown has provided a unique situation where there have been limited opportunities for Sexually Transmitted Infections to spread.

“This is a unique opportunity for people to have their sexual health checked before they break out of their bubbles. To know you’re clear of infection is a great way to head into Alert Level 2,” he said.

Whatever your age you can have a sexual health check at Canterbury DHB’s Sexual Health Service. These check-ups are free for New Zealand citizens and residents and certain visa holders. If you want to check you meet the eligibility criteria you can call the Sexual Health Centre on 03 364 0485.

They even provide free condoms for safer sex. Details on how to make an appointment are available here.

Your General Practice Team or Family Planning Clinic are also good places to get checked.  It’s important to remember that not all infections are itchy, sore or have spots, and it’s not just young people who need to get checked.  Untreated Sexually Transmitted Infections can cause all sorts of problems for all sorts of people.

Whether you identify as a boomer, a millennial or Gen X, Y or Z, LGBTQI+, it makes no difference to us. What’s important is that you take your sexual health seriously, and care enough to make time for a check before you reignite your love life under Alert Level Two.

Medical Officer of Health Dr Ramon Pink says now is the perfect time for people to get a check-up and make sure they don’t start their own chain of ‘community transmission’ as people start to connect after a period of restraint in their own bubble.

“We want to save our contact tracing efforts for COVID-19,” says Dr Pink. “If hooking up with someone is on your mind, do the right thing and get yourself checked to avoid giving them more than you mean to,” Dr Pink said.

Further information about what’s involved in a sexual health check is available on healthinfo

ENDS

Further info:

Visits to Family Planning are free if you’ve under 22. All Family Planning clinics now offer do-it-yourself STI tests, so you may not need to see a nurse or doctor. This is for people who don't have any signs of an infection. You will take the test samples yourself in the clinic bathroom and give them to the receptionist. More info can be found here: https://www.familyplanning.org.nz/clinics/services/sti-testing-and-treatment

Phone your General Practice Team and ask for a sexual health check – in some practices this can be carried out by a nurse. If you’re under 18 sexual health consults will be free and low cost consults are available for adults with a Community Services Card in most practices – call your GP first to check.

In this edition of the CEO Update…

In light of International Nurses Day tomorrow on Tuesday 12 May, CEO David Meates gives a heartfelt thank you to all our nurses, including those who answered the call to work in new and challenging environments: Rosewood, Ward GG and Christchurch Hospital’s COVID-19 Acute Medical Assessment Unit. He also provides a snapshot of a day in the life of our public health team that, 16 weeks ago, stood up their Emergency Operations Centre in just two hours.

This issue also shares the voices of nurses across Canterbury DHB and what they love about their roles to commemorate International Nurses Day , shares the experiences of nurses working in Ward GG at Burwood Hospital, and much more.

You can read the Canterbury DHB CEO Update in two different formats:

View on issuu.com Download PDF (5MB)

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.
The DHB's visitor policy has again been updated as we navigate our way through COVID-19 alert level three

Changes have been made to the DHB's visitor policy for Burwood Hospital

Following Monday’s relocation of residents from Burwood Hospital back to their home at Rosewood Rest Home & Hospital, changes have been made to the visitor restrictions in place at Burwood under Alert Level 3.

The following visitor restrictions now apply:

All visitors need to be checked in via the Main Entrance to Burwood Hospital – 300 Burwood Road

  • One nominated person from the patient’s bubble may visit once per day during visiting hours 10am to 6pm and must be the only visitor for the duration of the patient’s stay in hospital. 
  • Outpatient appointments, a support person will only be permitted under specific criteria – e.g. Carer/support person is required to be with them at all times.

Details of visiting hours for all Canterbury DHB facilities under Alert Level 3 are available here.

ENDS

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.
Health warning  – algal bloom in Lake Pegasus

Cantabrians are being reminded to follow the Alert Level restrictions on the use of recreational water sites

Canterbury District Health Board’s Community and Public Health unit has lifted its algal bloom health warnings for the Rakahuri/Ashley River, Temuka River at Manse Bridge, Te Ana a Wai/Te Nga Wai at Te Nga Wai Road and the Opihi River at Waipopo Huts.

Recent cyanobacteria surveys of the above mentioned rivers have shown the cover of potentially toxic algae (benthic cyanobacteria) in the river have decreased and are now below a threshold that is of concern to public health.

Cantabrians are reminded that restrictions still apply to the use of recreational water sites dependent on the COVID-19 Alert Level.

Health warnings remain in place for cyanobacteria at the following sites:

  • Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere (planktonic)
  • Wairewa/Lake Forsyth (planktonic)
  • Pegasus Lake (planktonic)
  • Temuka River at SH1 (benthic)

Canterbury Medical Officer of Health Dr Ramon Pink says Environment Canterbury’s Contact Recreation water quality monitoring has ceased until the 2020/2021 summer, however sites which remain in a health warning will continue to be monitored regularly.

“The public should keep a look out for cyanobacteria in rivers/river banks during any recreational activities they undertake,” says Dr Pink.

Facts about benthic cyanobacteria in rivers:

  • Appears as dark brown/black mats attached to rocks along the riverbed.
  • A low cover of the algae can occur naturally but can increase rapidly during warmer months. Algal blooms are influenced by a combination of available nutrients in the water and sediments (such as nitrogen and phosphorus), a sustained period of low and stable flows, and favourable weather conditions (e.g. increased temperature, calm days).
  • It often has a strong musty smell and algal toxin concentrations can vary over short periods.
  • Although high river levels will remove the algal bloom, detached mats can accumulate along the shore and increase the risk of exposure to toxins.
  • If a health warning is in place avoid contact with the water.
  • Although district or city councils may place warning signs, these may not be seen at the numerous river access points, hence the need for people/ dog-walkers to treat every low-flowing river cautiously.

Facts about planktonic cyanobacteria in lakes:

  • If the water is cloudy, discoloured, or has small globules suspended in it, avoid all contact.
  • Not all cyanobacterial blooms are visible to the naked eye and toxins can persist after the blooms disappear.
  • Cyanobacterial concentrations can change quickly with changing environmental conditions (e.g. wind). If a health warning is in place avoid contact with the water.

For further information visit:

https://www.lawa.org.nz/explore-data/canterbury-region/

Or contact Community and Public Health on (03) 364 1777:

https://www.cph.co.nz/your-health/recreational-water/

For more information about Mahinga Kai:

https://www.cph.co.nz/wp-content/uploads/saf0112.pdf

ENDS

Over 100,000 flu vaccines have been administered in Canterbury so far

An impressive milestone has been reached for the Canterbury community this week with more than 100,000 flu vaccinations given since the vaccine was released in early March.

This year the flu vaccine was released earlier than usual to help protect the most vulnerable in the community against the flu, especially with the additional threat of COVID-19.

“Reaching more than 100,000 flu vaccinations so early in the year is encouraging, particularly since it has been achieved in spite of the challenges of vaccine supply and restrictions under COVID-19 Alert Level 4,” says Dr Ramon Pink, Medical Officer of Health.

One of the priority groups for early access to the flu vaccine are people aged 65 and over. More people in this group have now been vaccinated this year than for the whole of last year.

“Having the flu vaccination is still your best protection against the flu. Priority groups should have their vaccination as soon as possible if they haven’t already,” says Dr Pink.

The success to date is thanks to the work of General Practice teams, pharmacists and occupational health vaccinators who have adapted the way they provided flu vaccinations under Alert Level 4.

While there are still some challenges with supply of the flu vaccine in Canterbury, people are encouraged to contact their GP or pharmacist to check when they can come in for their vaccination.

The flu vaccination is now available for the general public, and is free for the following priority groups:

  • people aged 65 and over
  • pregnant women
  • anyone with certain chronic health conditions
  • children aged 4 and under with a history of severe respiratory illness.
  •  

“Now more than ever it is important to do what we can to protect the community and reduce pressure on the health system as it continues to respond to the threat of COVID-19,” says Dr Pink.

General advice for staying well

Help keep yourself, your whānau and your community healthy by:

  • regularly washing your hands with soap and water
  • thoroughly drying your hands after washing them
  • sneezing and coughing into a tissue, clothing or your elbow
  • staying home if you feel unwell.

ENDS

In this edition of the CEO Update…

CEO David Meates shares news that, as part of a national sentinel testing, around 1500 tests will be carried out on asymptomatic people in Canterbury to see if there is any COVID-19 in the community. With the move to Alert Level 3, our system is gearing up with more planned care underway and more staff returning to work. He also talks about the mobile surgical bus out in Rangiora today, carrying out elective operations deferred for the past six weeks due to the lockdown.

This issue also celebrates the work of midwives during lockdown, highlights how the Reading in Mind book scheme is helping people better understand and self-manage mental health issues, how the NZ Bear Hunt came to be nominated for the Golden Foot Walking Awards 2020, and much more.

You can read the Canterbury DHB CEO Update in two different formats:

View on issuu.com Download PDF (5MB)

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.
The DHB's visitor policy has again been updated as we navigate our way through COVID-19 alert level three

The DHB's visitor policy has again been updated as we navigate our way through COVID-19 alert level three

As we settle into Alert Level 3, sticking to our bubble and staying home unless you need to go out is still our best defence against the spread of COVID-19, so visitor restrictions still apply at all of our facilities, however some rules have been relaxed.

For most inpatient ward areas at Christchurch Hospital, we are now allowing one nominated person from a patient’s ‘bubble’ to visit once per day during visiting hours. This person becomes the nominated visitor for the duration of a patient’s stay.

For Burwood Hospital and our other facilities who provide treatment and care for older people there is still no visiting for most areas, with exceptions made for end of life care and the Spinal Unit at Burwood, where one nominated visitor is allowed.

Visitors are still not allowed in high risk areas where our most vulnerable patients are or where patients are in isolation. Exceptions may be made on compassionate grounds on a case by case basis including for end of life care for patients who are not COVID-19 positive.

People who are self-isolating or who are unwell should remain at home and should not visit.

Visiting for maternity services under Alert Level 3 has changed. Women who have had an elective caesarean section can have one support person. Women in labour in a maternity facility are allowed two nominated support people from their extended bubble for the duration of the labour and birth. For the duration of postnatal stays, women can have one named support person from the same bubble who can visit once per day for any length of time between 10am and 8pm.

Details of every visitor will be recorded upon arrival. This is to ensure that once nominated, only that person visits from then on and to allow rapid contact tracing if anyone they have been in contact with is later confirmed as having COVID-19.

“Practicing safe physical distancing, good hand hygiene and covering coughs or sneezes are all still vitally important,” says Canterbury DHB Emergency Coordination Centre Incident Controller, Dr Sue Nightingale.

“Under Alert Level 3, for most inpatient ward areas one person per patient can visit or support a member of your whānau who is unwell, as long as you follow the rules which have been put in place to protect you and others. Some higher risk areas do not allow visiting at Alert Level 3, and we are still asking people not to visit the hospital or health centre if they don’t need to,” Sue Nightingale says.

This updated guidance is effective at all Canterbury DHB facilities from tomorrow, Thursday 30 April.

For more information on the visitor guidance for each Canterbury DHB health facility, please visit our website: https://www.cdhb.health.nz/your-health/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov/#1

ENDS

In this edition of the CEO Update…

CEO David Meates outlines what the move to Alert Level 3 will mean for the Canterbury Health System, as we start to perform more planned surgeries, carry out more outpatient appointments and see more staff returning to work. Screening people at the front doors to our facilities and limiting visitors will still happen, and David encourages all of us to continue to stay the course and break the chain of transmission.

This issue also recognises the sacrifices of nurses who went to help in the First World War; celebrates the arrival of a much-needed ultrasound machine at Kaikōura Health; highlights the replacement of Christchurch Hospital's large dishwasher that was well past its use by date, and much more.

You can read the Canterbury DHB CEO Update in two different formats:

View on issuu.com Download PDF (5MB)

 

In this edition of the CEO Update…

CEO David Meates gives a special shoutout to the staff of Burwood Hospital’s Ward GG, who have been working in a challenging environment providing complex care to frail, elderly people, including end of life care. He also thanks the teams that have supported and continue to support Ward GG staff, helping to ensure they can continue to give high quality care. David also highlights how our health system will respond when we move from Alert Level 4 to Alert Level 3 next week. 

This issue also congratulates one of Canterbury DHB's teams for winning a communications award in a global competition for the 2018 flu campaign; shares some messages of encouragement from the ProjectSEARCH interns at Burwood Hospital; celebrates the work of nursing reform pioneer Grace Neill; and much more.

You can read the Canterbury DHB CEO Update in two different formats:

View on issuu.com Download PDF (5MB)

Covid-19

Care of psychogeriatric dementia patients from the Rosewood cluster being cared for at Burwood Hospital

As announced today by Director of Public Health Dr Caroline McElnay, I extend my deepest sympathies to the whānau of a woman who died at Burwood yesterday.

I know the whole Canterbury community and health system will be feeling the same way, united in sadness.

The woman was in her 80s, and was one of 20 Rosewood residents who were transferred to Burwood to be isolated together and cared for.

Sadly, the woman is the seventh person to die from the Rosewood group.

Her whānau were not able to be with her when she passed away, but I can confirm a staff member was with her to provide comfort, reassurance and care.

We were pleased to be able to fulfil her whānau’s request to wrap a korowai around their mum. They explained that the feathers represented the fingers of her children and grandchildren.

I hope the following comments from the woman’s whānau bring some comfort to the staff who cared for her and who are continuing to provide the highest level of care in incredibly sad and difficult times.

“It was so special that the staff caring for her could take photos and a video of mum in our sacred korowai. We will treasure it forever.”

“I just need to say thank you so much and welcome to our family. You were everything and more that we could ask for nana and she clearly just clicked with you so I’m glad it was you and the team by her side. I know you guys are just doing your jobs but to this level of intimacy within a family I don’t think any training could prepare you for. Our whole family is so grateful and hope you guys are all doing ok as well.”

Please continue to respect the privacy of our patients and staff.

ENDS

Covid-19

Care of psychogeriatric dementia patients from the Rosewood cluster being cared for at Burwood Hospital

Statement from Canterbury DHB chief executive David Meates

The staff in Ward GG at Burwood Hospital are working in an extremely challenging environment, providing complex care to fragile, elderly people.

Their performance is and has been outstanding. I am extremely proud of the level of care our staff are providing.

I can assure all families who have a loved one who was transferred from Rosewood Rest Home & Hospital to Burwood that whenever a resident is receiving end of life care, a caring staff member is always with them, reassuring them and ensuring that they are comfortable.

The team have received a lot of feedback that attests to the compassionate care being provided. A sample of this is included below.

Feedback from families

“Many thanks to all the staff who cared for my dad to the end. I will always hold a huge part in my heart for you. So kind of you to play dad's video. I am sure it helped him pass. I hope to one day be able to thank you both in person. Bless you both.”

“They are just amazing, doing an incredible job. The communication with us was superb – we had lots of calls, including facetime calls with dad. We’re so grateful.” 

“We couldn’t speak more highly of the staff and care dad received, both at Burwood and at Rosewood. They skyped with dad and the nurse caring for him arranged for him to see a video the family had put together, and there were lots of phone calls.”

“I am absolutely over the moon and delighted I spoke with her. You are doing such a stellar job and words could never match what you do. God bless, take care and may the Lord shower you with love. Aroha Mai.”

“Lovely to meet you on Facetime this morning. Thank you so much for looking after mum, we are a family really appreciate your care, kindness and understanding.”

“Hi, I just wanted to say thank you for the video chat with dad this morning, it gave us a bit of peace. I cant imagine how hard it is to keep smiling and being supportive while there are people hurting behind closed doors. Thank you and your team for all you are doing.”

“You are just a blessing to our loved ones…be safe… you are appreciated so much.”

“I’m so pleased dad is under your care, we are so lucky to have you in charge of our loved ones at this time. Thank you so very much.”

“Bless you, you are an absolute angel to the family.”

“Nice of you to make the time (to call), it makes things a bit less stressful when I get an update.”

“You and your team are the most caring people I have ever come across.”

ENDS

Covid-19

Canterbury DHB is committed to continue to work to make it easy for staff to do the right thing when it comes to the effective use of PPE

Please attribute to Dr Josh Freeman, Clinical Director of Microbiology at Canterbury DHB

What really matters is how PPE is used, what is appropriate for the work being carried out and how comfortable staff feel wearing the various options available to them.

We know that COVID-19 is spread via droplets and contact and a higher level of protection is warranted when staff are carrying out ‘aerosolising procedures’ such as intubation, and non-invasive ventilation.  During these procedures a higher spec mask should be worn such as an N-95 as they filter out aerosols.

Regular surgical masks are recommended by both the World Health Organization and the Ministry of Health for healthcare workers caring for people who are suspected of having or have tested positive to COVID-19.  These masks are have a long track record of effectiveness and are used when caring for patients with a wide range of infectious diseases.

Surgical masks should be removed and replaced with a clean dry mask as soon as they become damp. A damp, soggy surgical mask is not effective, and we know that in a busy and demanding work environment it can be difficult for staff to stop what they are doing and change their PPE, but this is so important.

To encourage safe use of PPE we have increased our efforts to remind staff to change PPE regularly and have a plan to add ‘PPE Champions’ to the teams working in both the isolation ward at Burwood and Rosewood Rest Home to check that PPE is being worn correctly and importantly that it is removed safely to minimise the risk of cross-contamination. 

Canterbury DHB is committed to continue to work to make it easy for staff to do the right thing when it comes to the effective use of PPE.

From today we are offering some alternative PPE options for staff working with the psychogeriatric dementia patients in Burwood – this includes visors for those who want to wear them and  N-95 masks for those who feel more comfortable with the fit of the N-95 mask rather than a surgical mask. For some people, it’s possible the N-95 mask may be less prone to becoming damp but this remains to be seen. Note: the N-95 masks are not needed for clinical reasons as no aerosolising procedures are carried out in that ward.  The visors are an option for those who find goggles uncomfortable.

A question regarding the use of disposable shoe covers and hair covers has been raised. In response: these are not recommended by the World Health Organization or the New Zealand Ministry of Health. One of the reasons for this is that the more elaborate the PPE, and the more different components there are, the greater the risk is of contamination during the doffing (taking off) process.

Evidence shows that during the Ebola outbreak, a common cause of healthcare workers contracting the disease was by self-contamination when removing their PPE, which is why more is not always better.

Canterbury DHB is 100% committed to ensure the health, safety and wellbeing of its staff and patients through the effective use of personal protective equipment. It is however important to remember that PPE is one form of protection. Other staff actions are equally important to ensure their own and their patient’s safety, such as regular hand hygiene (the 5 moments), sound environmental cleaning practices and appropriate waste disposal.

ENDS

 

In this edition of the CEO Update…

CEO David Meates thanks staff for all the work they are doing to support our collective preparations and response to the COVID-19 pandemic. He also acknowledges the six former residents of Rosewood’s psychogeriatric dementia unit who have sadly passed away over the past week, and thanks the staff that cared for them in their final days. David confirms there is a supply of personal protective equipment on the way for DHBs to send to community-based health and disability providers, and also explains the role that the Emergency Coordination Centre is playing in our COVID-19 response. 

This issue also covers a digital health week stall at Burwood Hospital that was well-attended by staff familiarising themselves with the resources available to them; a donation and giveaway of 200kg of Easter chocolate across our hospitals; a donation of 70 safety goggles for hospital staff who may deal with COVID-19 patients, and much more.

You can read the Canterbury DHB CEO Update in two different formats:

View on issuu.com Download PDF (5MB)

Covid-19

Information on dementia, psychogeriatric level residents from Rosewood who were relocated to Burwood

Please attribute comment to Dr Sue Nightingale, Incident Controller, Canterbury DHB Emergency Coordination Centre

The residents with dementia, psychogeriatric level, who were relocated to Burwood Hospital earlier in the week were not moved to Burwood because they needed to be admitted into hospital.

They were moved as they needed to be in a bigger facility where they could be safely isolated and cared for.

The ward they are in at Burwood has large rooms with ensuites, with dedicated spaces for staff donning and doffing (putting on and off) their PPE.

For those residents who are mobile, it has access to an outdoor garden, which some have been able to enjoy.

It is however important to understand that some of these residents have underlying health concerns and were unwell before they arrived at Burwood.

The care they are receiving is consistent with the psychogeriatric care they would have been provided in an aged care facility and includes, where appropriate, end of life/palliative care.

It's true that they are being cared for by DHB nurses and health care assistants, but as would occur in a psychogeriatric unit, the medical oversight is from a GP.

Our staff are providing expert and compassionate care to some of our community's most vulnerable people and I thank them for that – especially for the personalised care and support they are providing to those receiving end of life care.

I know this is also much appreciated by families who can't be there in person.

At Rosewood the lack of appropriate staffing and limitations on the facility for us to provide best practice isolation were significant constraints.

Relocating these vulnerable residents to Burwood was a necessary and important to provide the space and facilities needed to provide quality care.

ENDS 

Covid-19

Precautions in place for safe transfer of Rosewood Rest Home & Hospital hospital-level residents

To be attributed to Canterbury DHB CEO David Meates:

All 20 of the hospital-level residents moving from Rosewood into other facilities have tested negative for COVID-19 and are not showing any symptoms of infection.

As precautionary measures these residents will be cared for in isolation for the first 14 days after their move to their new facility. Staff caring for them will be wearing full Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for the first 14 days. All Aged Residential Care facilities receiving residents from Rosewood are being offered additional training in PPE use and infection prevention and control measures.  

The residents will continue to be closely monitored for any signs of COVID-19 infection in their new facility.

Canterbury DHB’s Infection Prevention & Control (IPC) team are involved in providing advice related to IPC precautions for each of the 20 residents who will be relocating. We are doing everything we can to ensure the safety of all residents.

We thank those rest home facilities who are welcoming the residents from Rosewood.

Canterbury DHB would also like to acknowledge the support and assistance of all the families/whānau of the Rosewood residents who have been extremely understanding and helpful at this time.

The first resident moved today and the residents will progressively be relocated into their new rest homes over the coming week.

ENDS

Covid-19

Canterbury DHB is moving an additional 20 Rosewood Rest Home & Hospital hospital-level residents

Following ongoing challenges finding replacement staff for Rosewood Rest Home and Hospital, Canterbury DHB’s Chief Executive, David Meates has authorised the relocation of 20 Rosewood residents currently in the home’s hospital-level care wing.

The residents will move to new homes in other aged care facilities providing hospital-level care over the next week.

“Families have been contacted and are central to our decision-making about where residents are moved to. Thankfully, there are a number of rest homes who have hospital-level rooms available. We expect all residents to be safely relocated to their new homes by the end of next week.

“We know this is disruptive for both residents and their whānau, but under the present circumstances it is the safest option while we’re unable to find appropriate staff to work at Rosewood to provide care to this group of vulnerable older people.  

“Once this group of 20 has been relocated, 24 residents will remain at Rosewood. We are confident we’ll have sufficient staff to care for these remaining residents until such time that some of the original Rosewood staff will be out of their isolation period and cleared to return to work.

David Meates said as of today eight further cases of COVID-19 have been have been confirmed as part of the Rosewood Cluster.

“Our utmost priority is to keep residents safe,” David Meates said.

ENDS

 Editor’s note: Earlier this week 20 residents from one of Rosewood’s dementia wards were relocated from Rosewood to Burwood Hospital where they could safely isolate as a group. Our media release on this move is here.

 Updated case numbers:

As at Saturday afternoon 10 April there are 28 cases of COVID-19 linked with the Rosewood cluster.

This comprises 15 staff – 5 confirmed and 10 probable

and 13 residents – 6 confirmed and 7 probable.

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.

A important message from Canterbury GPs during alert level four

People should be contacting their family doctor, or seeking care at an urgent doctors, as they normally would, during the Level 4 management period.

“It is important that you remain healthy and have your usual check-ups, renew prescriptions and talk to your family doctor about health issues,” Canterbury Primary Response Group Clinical Lead Dr Phil Schroeder said today.

“If people don’t seek advice in the usual way, then we risk a large number of people becoming unwell and requiring extra care, some in hospital,” he said.

“Please phone your family doctor as usual for an appointment. The initial appointment may be by phone or if you can, video, and GPs will see you in person where required.”

“Many pharmacies are running delivery services, if you decide not to go out to fill prescriptions,” he said.

“If you do have COVID-19 symptoms then call your family doctor or free-call Healthline on 0800 358 5453.”

COVID-19 symptoms include a cough, fever, or shortness of breath.

ENDS

CEO UpdateIn this edition of the CEO Update…

CEO David Meates introduces Peter Dooley – affectionately known by many as ‘2-metre Peter’ – who represents how far two metres is so you can keep that distance from other people outside of your bubble. David also acknowledges the work of the Student Volunteer Army, where students helped to do a first clean of the space to be used in Christchurch Hospital Hagley’s Intensive Care as part of the COVID-19 pandemic response. He also talks about All Right? and the Mental Health Foundation’s new national campaign, Getting Through Together – Whāia E Tātou Te Pae Tawhiti, to help New Zealanders look after their mental health and wellbeing during this COVID-19 pandemic.

This issue also covers some of measures the Chatham Islands is taking to prevent cases of COVID-19; the Medical Physics and Bioengineering Department’s work on 50 mobile personal protective equipment stands, and highlights some of the key pieces of advice from the Government’s Unite Against COVID-19 website; and much more.

You can read the Canterbury DHB CEO Update in two different formats:

View on issuu.com Download PDF (5MB)

Page last updated: 9 April 2020

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