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 – Other News

Childcare for essential workers

26 March 2020 ASMS

Finding appropriate childcare is a major concern for ASMS members and frontline health care staff during the Covid-19 crisis. The government has announced approved childcare companies which can look after the children of essential workers in their homes under strict protocols. It’s contained in the Ministry of Education’s update for schools. You can find it here

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Covid-19: Experts warn of hospital resources being stretched

11 March 2020 RNZ Morning Report

DHBs around the country are placing travel restrictions on staff to maintain staffing levels during the Covid-19 coronavirus outbreak amid warnings that hospital resources could be stretched. Staff at Auckland and Northland DHBs have been told if they go on holiday overseas and have to self-isolate on return, they’ll have to take unpaid or annual leave and will be unable to use sick leave or special paid leave. ASMS Executive Director Sarah Dalton speaks to RNZ’s Morning Report. Read and …

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Special tribute to doctor killed in mosque attacks

11 March 2020 Royal NZ College of GPs

A new medal has been developed by The Royal New Zealand College of GPs to pay tribute to Dr Amjad Hamid who was killed in the Christchurch mosque attacks. Dr Hamid was a heart doctor and rural hospital consultant and a member of ASMS. He lived in Christchurch but commuted to Hawera Hospital in Taranaki for work. Read more here

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West Coast DHB recruitíng ‘rural generalists’ to solve doctor shortage

27 February 2020 Stuff - Local Democracy Reporting

The West Coast DHB is planning to tackle a shortage of hospital doctors with a new breed of medics: Rural generalists. The Association for Salaried Medical Staff (ASMS) released a staffing survey this month, revealing what it called “a whopping 43 per cent shortfall of senior doctors” at the DHB. Five out of eight heads of department at the West Coast DHB said they did not have enough specialists for their services and estimated they were eight doctors short.  …

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WHO advice to healthworkers on Covid-19

26 February 2020 World Health Organisation

The World Health Organisation has issued advice to healthworkers around an outbreak of Covid-19 as cases increase globally.  It looks at the roles and responsibilities of healthworkers along with considerations relating to occupational safety and health.  There are some good principles and guidelines for both health workforces and organisations.  Read more here  

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An anaesthetist with a black belt

24 February 2020 Stuff

She’s a mum, an anaesthetist and she’s on ASMS’ National Executive – she also has a black belt in karate. When Katie Ben decided to join her two young sons in their karate classes six years ago, self-doubt got the better of her and she almost turned around and drove home. Now Seido Karate is her passion.  Read her inspiring story here     

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Doctors fear coronavirus will hit NZ at same time as winter flu season

21 February 2020 RNZ NEWS

Doctors fear the coronavirus Covid-19 will hit New Zealand at the same time as the winter flu season, stretching health services and hospitals to breaking point. A report by the New Zealand Institute of Economic Research says New Zealand needs to do more to prepare for a pandemic and not rely on travel bans. Sarah Dalton, executive director of the Association of Salaried Medical Specialists, said “I think our whole public health function in terms of epidemiology, planning, preparedness for …

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Middlemore doctor slams govt inaction on obesity

17 February 2020 Stuff

Middlemore Hospital intensive care specialist Dr David Galler sees the impact of obesity every day and believes his region has been abandoned in its fight against fat. Dr Galler and ASMS have been highly critical of the government’s decision to allow the food industry to continue self-regulating fast food advertising and have written to the Health Minister calling for tighter regulations. Read more        

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Don’t talk to me about resilience …

22 January 2020 British Medical Association

Hollow words about coping and resilience are not only patronising but make doctors who face unsustainable pressures feel it is their fault if they are struggling, says emergency medicine consultant Shewli Rahman. I arrived for my on-call, parked, sat in my car and realised I couldn’t get out. This wasn’t a bad day, bad week, or even a bad month. I simply didn’t want to be a doctor any more. I wanted it all to stop. I had been an …

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Our sick hospitals

21 January 2020 NZ Herald

The NZ Herald reveals serious hospital infrastructure issues across the country, including cramped, leaky and outdated buildings, old wiring that poses a fire hazard, not enough theatre space and a lack of equipment to help transfer vulnerable newborns.  It says they are a major risk to the treatment and safety of patients.  Highlights ASMS’ Hospitals on the Edge report. Read here

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