Kia Ora tatou.
Right now, at Counties Manukau, we’re taking stock of the recent Budget announcements on health spending.
Of special note, baseline funding has been reallocated to support the health needs of New Zealanders:
- $99 million has been put towards winter 2023 initiatives
- $118 million allocated to reduce waiting lists by freeing up inpatient hospital beds
- $20 million in spending to improve health equity for Maaori and Pasifika peoples.
There’s also an allocation for recruitment efforts and this will be a very welcome addition for health providers across the country.
Also note, the $5 co-payment for prescription medicines is being removed from July 1st this year.
In even more positive news, recruitment trends are looking positive here. Since November last year, we have hired just over 1000 nurses, midwives, health care assistants and other related professionals.
Related to this great news is that we are making solid progress on Planned Care and doing our absolute best to have our patients seen in a timely fashion.
Some of you may get a letter asking for your updated personal details. While I appreciate the frustration some of you may be feeling, this is a good sign and is an indication we may be getting to your appointment sooner than we previously expected.
Finally, just a reminder to have your vaccinations sorted before the worst of winter hits us.
I’ve just recovered from a bout of this year’s flu strain – suffice to say it is not pleasant!
Remember, the flu jab is free for children up to twelve years of age, for pregnant women, Maaori and Pasifika over 55, and everyone over 65 – once again, we urge you to get your jab and help protect yourself and your loved ones.
Ka pai too ra.
Dr Andrew Connolly
Chief Medical Officer