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

Medical students and physicians need to practice with empathy in caring for patients, says new WMA President

29 October 2019 World Medical Association

Medical students and physicians are becoming so exposed to the science of medicine that they are forgetting the emotional needs of their patients, according to the new President of the World Medical Association. Dr. Miguel Jorge, in his inaugural Presidential speech at the WMA’s annual Assembly in Tbilisi, Georgia, said most of the students entering medical school did so because they said they wanted to help people who were suffering. But studies showed that when they left medical school, they were …

Read more »

World Medical Association reaffirms opposition to euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide

29 October 2019 World Medical Association

The World Medical Association has reaffirmed its long-standing policy of opposition to euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide. After an intensive process of consultation with physicians and non physicians around the world, the WMA at its annual Assembly in Tbilisi, Georgia, adopted a revised Declaration on Euthanasia and Physician-Assisted Suicide. This states: ‘The WMA reiterates its strong commitment to the principles of medical ethics and that utmost respect has to be maintained for human life. Therefore, the WMA is firmly opposed …

Read more »

Staff shortages and rising number of patients leading to activation of ‘code red’ in hospitals

25 October 2019 Mandy Te - Stuff

Staff shortages and the rising number of ill patients has lead to an increased activation of “code red” in hospitals, a health union boss says. “Code red” can be activated when hospitals have full beds and elective surgeries have to be cancelled in order to treat people with urgent needs. On Wednesday, the Wairarapa District Health Board (DHB) declared a “code red” at its hospital in Masterton for the second time this month. Executive director of Association of Salaried Medical …

Read more »

The painful price of waiting for prostate surgery at Southern DHB

24 October 2019 Radio New Zealand - Checkpoint

The Southern District Health Board has been slammed for its poor treatment and care of urology patients in a new report from the Health and Disability Commissioner. The problems in urology service likely cut the life expectancy of one man who now has secondary cancer. On Monday the DHB chief executive Chris Fleming told Checkpoint he is proud of the improvements being made. But there are still of 100 people waiting longer than the recommended Ministry of Health guidelines for their operation …

Read more »

BMA apologises to female doctors over sexism

21 October 2019 Denis Campbell - The Guardian

The British Medical Association has apologised to female doctors who have experienced sexism and sexual harassment after an independent inquiry described it as an “old boys’ club” that undervalued women. The trade union, which represents about 70% of Britain’s 240,000 doctors, has promised sweeping reforms of its processes and culture in response to the inquiry’s findings. Daphne Romney QC found that some female medics and BMA personnel “feel they are undervalued, ignored and patronised because they …

Read more »

40,000 more New Zealanders to begin screening for bowel cancer

21 October 2019 Radio New Zealand - Morning Report

About 40 thousand more New Zealanders are set to begin receiving potentially life-saving screening for bowel cancer. Twelve thousand of them live in the Whanganui District Health Board area, which will join the national screening programme on Tuesday. Neighbouring MidCentral DHB is likely to follow next month — setting a halfway milestone for a carefully managed programme that some worry is already stretched. Health Correspondent Karen Brown reports. Listen here.

Read more »

How the vaping industry is using a defensive tactic pioneered decades ago by big tobacco

16 October 2019 Sarah Milov - Time

Each week brings a new story of some calamity brought by vaping. In late July, a Connecticut man filed suit against e-cigarette giant Juul Labs after suffering a massive stroke. The suit alleges that he became addicted while he was still a high schooler, even though the company says it is specifically taking action to prevent young people from trying the product. In August, an Illinois patient died after vaping, succumbing to a mysterious …

Read more »

How is the NHS performing? July 2019 quarterly monitoring report

15 October 2019 Deborah Ward, Siva Anandaciva - The Kings Fund

Since April 2011, The King’s Fund has published a quarterly monitoring report (QMR) to track, analyse and comment on the issues the health and care system is facing. This is the 28th QMR, which takes stock of what has happened over the past few months with NHS financial and operational performance in England. These are strange days when it comes to health and care policy. Compared to the recent past, it is a time of relative plenty and certainty. A 

Read more »

Health practitioners to take charge following DHB election

15 October 2019 Fiona Cassie - New Zealand Doctor

The voters of South Canterbury like to put their health practitioners in charge. Following the elections which finished on Saturday, all seven elected positions on the region’s DHB will be filled by current or retired health practitioners. Four additional people can be appointed by the Minister of Health to each board. Among the country’s 19 DHBs to hold elections – Waikato has a commissioner and did not hold one – a number of health practitioners have been voted in. But …

Read more »

Almost half of CCDHB’s shifts insufficiently staffed as nurses cope with ‘stressful’ job

15 October 2019 Amber-Leigh Woolf - Stuff

Nursing shifts are dramatically understaffed and vacancies have nearly doubled in the last six months at the Capital and Coast District Health Board (CCDHB).  In September 47 per cent of shifts were below target and there were 15 midwife vacancies and 144 registered nurse vacancies. Patient safety was at risk as tired nurses worked extra hours without breaks, warned the  New Zealand Nurses Organisation (NZNO). Read more here:

Read more »