Good afternoon all,
Please pass on to your teams my good wishes and admiration for the work they have achieved over such a challenging time. See a brief video message conveying this below, followed by a more in-depth update.
Firstly I wish to acknowledge the financial impact that COVID-19 has placed on our general practices. It is quite clear to us that the reduction in patient visits to GPs and the difficulties invoicing virtual and phone consultations are impacting on the viability of the business model.
During COVID-19, GPNZ has co-ordinated twice-weekly meetings of PHO chief executives and Ministry of Health officials to address this, among other matters.
While we were very pleased to be able to get two payments from the Ministry through Cabinet and out to general practices, it was disappointing that the third that was signalled was not forthcoming. With the Ministry’s blessing however, we have been able to make a separate payment to practices from existing PHO funds.
We will continue to work through the PHO CEO group to investigate further initiatives that will support practices through COVID-19, and the on-going impacts from it.
It has been a real pleasure to receive many positive messages from our general practices in support of our Health Hawke’s Bay team.
I am extremely proud of our people for the way they have stepped up to the challenge that COVID-19 has thrown at us, from Peter Satterthwaite and Karyn Bousfield, who have taken commanding roles in the region’s emergency health response team, to those who set up the first CBAC in a matter of days, to our in-house registered health professionals who fronted the CBACs alongside our primary healthcare workforce, to those who organised PPE and scrubs and then jumped in their cars to deliver them – and there are many more examples.
It has proved a salutatory lesson in just how much we can achieve when we work so closely together. Well done to all.
Mental Health RFP
We are very pleased to have had our submission to the Ministry of Health’s call for applications to have mental health specialists placed within Hawke’s Bay general practice accepted. We did not get everything we requested, however we did get budget for 12 health improvement practitioners and 12 health coaches.
The allocation of these will be planned over the next weeks, based on the Ministry of Health requirements and community needs assessments. The team will keep you up-to-date.
Health Care Home going forward
The team has received a number of inquiries around Health Care Home (HCH), both on implementation and funding. It is a matter the management team is giving a great deal of thought to, moving from incrementally managing three teams into the system at a time, to managing the migration of all of our 20-plus practices.
While the majority of Hawke’s Bay’s practices have picked up some components of the HCH system, particularly virtual and phone consultation, there are a number of other components that are integral to the system. As soon as the team has a potential pathway forward on this, they will let you know.
General Practice feedback survey
We intend to have a feedback survey on Health Hawke’s Bay’s support and service to you before the end of May.
We are very keen to keep up the momentum that COVID-19 has engendered, as we move through the post-COVID era and into business as usual.
The questions will be structured in a way that will enable us to clearly see what we can do to make our service to you more efficient, and make sure that our efforts help you to meet the needs of our communities.
Thank you for your time.