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

More questions than answers

ASMS News 8 April 2019 Media Release - ASMS

The Mental Health and Addiction inquiry report has laudable aims but lacks detail about implementation and side-lines those who work in the sector, says Lyndon Keene, Director of Policy and Research at the Association of Salaried Medical Specialists (ASMS) Published in ASMS magazine The Specialist on page 17-18, Mr Keene’s analysis of the report can be read here: Mr Keene takes issue with the inquiry panel’s decision to be (in the panel’s words) “guided by the needs of …

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Medicare for all and its rivals: new offshoots of old health policy roots

Other News 5 April 2019 Annals of Internal Medicine

The leading option for health reform in the United States would leave 36.2 million persons uninsured in 2027 while costs would balloon to nearly $6 trillion (1). That option is called the status quo. Other reasons why temporizing is a poor choice include the country’s decreasing life expectancy, the widening mortality gap between the rich and the poor, and rising deductibles and drug prices. Even insured persons fear medical bills, commercial pressures permeate examination rooms, …

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BMA launches urgent inquiry into sexual harassment

Other News 3 April 2019 Matthew Weaver - The Guardian

Allegations by some of the UK’s most senior female doctors of widespread sexual harassment at the top of the medical profession have forced the British Medical Association to launch an urgent investigation. Dr Zoe Norris and Dr Katie Bramall-Stainer, who are members of the general practice committee (GPC), the body which represents all GPs, have chosen to blow the whistle on misogynistic behaviour of some members and the sexist culture of the male-dominated committee. Hundreds of colleagues have contacted them …

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Almost $178,000 in medical equipment not returned to Waikato DHB in five years

Other News 3 April 2019 Libby Wilson - Stuff

Patients who fail to return loaned equipment to DHBs are costing the taxpayers tens of thousands of dollars per year. In Waikato, a bariatric shower commode worth $1798 is the most expensive item to go walkabout recently. Over the past five years, the bill for the region’s public health provider has added up to almost $178,000. But Waikato is not alone – other hospitals have previously called amnesties for items including crutches, wheelchairs, and electric beds. Read more here:

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Q&A: ‘Medical manslaughter’ a growing worry

Other News 3 April 2019 Jamie Morton - New Zealand Herald

A UK neurologist and medical law campaigner just visited the University of Auckland’s Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences to discuss “medical manslaughter” – when doctors are charged over the deaths of patients. Dr Jenny Vaughan was the medical lead for a group that helped overturn the conviction of a UK consultant surgeon, Dr David Sellu. Since these events, grassroots support has grown from thousands of healthcare in support of Dr Hadiza Bawa-Garba, a trainee paediatrician who was convicted of manslaughter …

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Thousands of medical appointments delayed after floods

Other News 3 April 2019 Radio New Zealand

About 4000 people will have their medical appointments postponed after a flood in the Christchurch Outpatients building on Friday. The building will remain closed until next Monday, after steam from a burst heating pipe activated the fire sprinkler system, causing significant damage to walls, floors and ceilings. The Canterbury District Health Board said a new valve for the heating pipe was needed and all pipework would need a hydraulic test before it was back in operation again. The health board …

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District health boards to check mass-casualty plans after Christchurch Hospital review of massacre

Other News 2 April 2019 Martin Johnston - New Zealand Herald

Public hospitals are reviewing their preparations for mass-casualty events in light of the Christchurch massacre. Forty-nine people were shot dead at two mosques, while another later died of gunshot wounds after being transported to Christchurch Hospital. Forty-eight survivors were treated at the hospital. Others were treated in community health facilities. In the space of a few hours on March 15, Christchurch Hospital had to deal with nearly three times as many gunshot survivors as Auckland’s Middlemore Hospital sees on average …

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New Zealand Medical Students Support Ban on Semi-Automatic Weapons

Other News 2 April 2019 New Zealand Medical Students' Association

In the wake of the terrorist attack on the Muslim community in Christchurch, New Zealand’s medical students strongly support the Government’s ban on military style semi-automatic weapons and high capacity magazines, which will progress through Parliament this week. “Every possible step must be taken to ensure a tragedy like this never happens again in our country,” says the President of the New Zealand Medical Students’ Association (NZMSA), Fraser Jeffery. “These weapons can too easily be modified to take multiple human …

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Junior doctors to strike again – but not in Canterbury

Other News 1 April 2019 Radio New Zealand, Stuff

Junior hospital doctors have voted to strike for a fifth time this year, now that bargaining with the district health boards has stalled this month. Members of the Resident Doctors’ Association will strike for four days, from 15 April – but not in Canterbury, because of the terror attacks. Union advocate David Munro said they voted overwhelmingly to strike, though with natural reservations. “Nobody becomes a doctor to have to go on strike, they become doctors because they want to …

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Activist Athol Steward’s 20km ocean swim in protest over seabed mining

Other News 1 April 2019 Radio New Zealand - Robin Martin

An environmental activist has swum a giant “X” across a proposed seabed mining site 25km off the South Taranaki coast to mark it as a no-go area for commercial development. And to drive his message home Athol Steward is taking to the Tasman Sea again today to tackle a 20km ocean swim from Pātea to Kai Iwi Beach north of Whanganui. Mr Steward, who will be joined on the coastal swim by his son, Lloyd, said that the stretch of …

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