ASMS

Working for better health care in New Zealand

The Association of Salaried Medical Specialists (ASMS) is the professional association and union uniting doctors and dentists in New Zealand.

  • News – ASMS News

Dramatic rise in acute hospital patients a legacy of years of under-funding

21 June 2018 Media Release - ASMS

“Years of under-funding the public health system and other social services have resulted in a dramatic increase in acute hospital admissions,” says Lyndon Keene, Director of Policy and Research at the Association of Salaried Medical Specialists (ASMS). “Health Ministry figures show acute public hospital admissions increased by 20% over the seven years to 2017, and our hospital emergency departments are being inundated. Despite increased use of primary health care services, there is still significant unmet need. The system is stressed …

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ACC adds insult to injury in cavalier response to medical advisors

20 June 2018 Media Release - ASMS

“ACC has added insult to injury by planning to cut medical advisory staffing and then responding in a very cavalier way to our members’ quite reasonable requests for improvements to their collective employment agreement,” says Lloyd Woods, Senior Industrial Officer at the Association of Salaried Medical Specialists (ASMS). “It beggars belief that ACC, the organisation that prides itself on putting people-before-process, won’t agree to include a statement on the importance of wellbeing in the collective agreement. Why on earth would …

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Nurses a vital part of public health system; health bosses need to step up

18 June 2018 Media Release - ASMS

“It’s up to health bosses now to put aside their point-scoring and knuckle down to the task of reaching an agreement with nurses to avoid national strikes,” says Ian Powell, Executive Director of the Association of Salaried Medical Specialists (ASMS). He was commenting on an announcement by the New Zealand Nurses Organisation that the latest DHB MECA offer has been strongly rejected by nurses and that the union is seeking urgent mediation to resolve the issues so two 24-hour national …

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Taranaki DHB laboratory privatisation bid ditched; well done Health Minister

7 June 2018 Media Release - ASMS

“Senior doctors are delighted the DHB has finally put the brakes on its attempt to privatise its hospital laboratory after dragging its heels on the matter,” says Ian Powell, Executive Director of the Association of Salaried Medical Specialists (ASMS). “The DHB was foolish to even consider privatisation in the first place and it certainly should have seen the writing on the wall after clear signals from the new Labour coalition government that it would not be handing over control of …

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ACC review of organisational culture needs to be open and transparent

31 May 2018 Media Release - ASMS

The senior doctors’ union is calling for a review into the conduct of ACC’s chief executive and the organisation’s culture to be open and transparent. “Our members are pleased a review is being carried out but they will be disappointed that it’s happening behind closed doors,” says Lloyd Woods, Senior Industrial Officer at the Association of Salaried Medical Specialists (ASMS). He was commenting on reports of the secretive review by Queen’s Counsel Hugh Rennie (https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/104231259/acc-calls-in-top-queens-counsel-to-review-allegations). News of the review …

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Health Minister’s Letter of expectations to health bosses a missed opportunity to address workforce crisis

28 May 2018 Media Release - ASMS

“The Health Minister has given hospital bosses a clear signal about the Government’s health priorities but has missed an opportunity to focus on one of the main ways to achieve those priorities – the specialist workforce in our public hospitals,” says Ian Powell, Executive Director of the Association of Salaried Medical Specialists (ASMS). He was commenting on Health Minister David Clark’s first annual letter of expectations to the chairs of the country’s 20 district health boards and their subsidiary entities …

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ACC proposes slashing medical advisory staffing

23 May 2018 Media Release - ASMS

ACC plans to cut its medical advisory staffing by almost 20%, says Lloyd Woods, Senior Industrial Officer at the Association of Salaried Medical Specialists (ASMS). “Staff in ACC’s clinical services directorate have been invited to briefings on proposed changes that will see a significant reduction in the number of medical advisors. It’s fair to say they’re gob-smacked by this flawed proposal, and dismayed by the potential implications if ACC goes ahead with it.” ASMS represents most of the medical advisors …

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Reports highlight appalling failure of hospital specialist workforce planning; more specialist positions desperately needed

21 May 2018 Media Release - ASMS

“Reports that much-needed medical graduates from overseas are unable to find jobs in New Zealand highlight the appalling failure of workforce planning for hospital specialist positions by the Government’s agency Health Workforce New Zealand and district health boards,” says Ian Powell, Executive Director of the Association of Salaried Medical Specialists (ASMS). He was commenting on reports that overseas trained doctors are finding it difficult to compete with New Zealand and Australian medical graduates in the job market (https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/health/103932802/foreign-doctors-struggling-to-get-jobs-in-new-zealand). Preliminary …

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Some Budget relief for public health in sight but a lot more needed

17 May 2018 Media Release - ASMS

“The Government’s health budget revealed today offers some relief to the cash-strapped public health system but clearly much more will be required to reverse years of under-resourcing,” says Lyndon Keene, Director of Policy and Research at the Association of Salaried Medical Specialists (ASMS). “It’s a positive first step, however, and senior doctors and dentists will particularly welcome the Government’s acknowledgement of the burden they and other health professionals have been carrying during years of under-funding, workforce shortages, and increased workloads.” …

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Fingers crossed for the budget our public hospitals desperately need, say senior doctors

15 May 2018 Media Release - ASMS

“Public hospital specialists are desperately hoping the first Budget from the new coalition government will make a real difference to waiting lists, high levels of unmet health needs and the increasingly bare cupboards,” says Lyndon Keene, Director of Policy and Research at the Association of Salaried Medical Specialists (ASMS). The Council of Trade Unions and ASMS have released a joint analysis of the levels of funding required in Thursday’s Budget to maintain public health services at both their existing levels …

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