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

Cancer warning as delays hit gynaecology services: ‘Lives put at risk’

Other News 22 November 2018 Nicholas Jones - New Zealand Herald

Women are waiting up to half a year for procedures to help rule out cancer – and a GP fears lives are at risk. Counties Manukau DHB has been about seven gynaecology beds short for the past 12 months, a shortfall it says carries “very concerning” risk. Dr Mark Arbuckle, a GP at Otara Family and Christian Health Centre, has patients caught up in the delays. “Gynaecology is under huge pressure,” he told the Herald. “We are having to try manage patients …

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Nice buildings – now the hospital specialists working in them need government action

ASMS News 21 November 2018 ASMS media release

The union for senior doctors and dentists is welcoming the Government’s promise of more money to fix the country’s run-down and cash-strapped hospitals, but says equal attention must be given to tackling problems with the senior medical workforce. “We’re very glad that the Government is allocating significant amounts of money for our public health infrastructure but there are also longstanding and very serious shortages in the specialist workforce in public hospitals that need to be addressed urgently,” says Ian Powell, …

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Big pharma ‘failing to develop urgent drugs for poorest countries’

Other News 21 November 2018 Julia Kollewe -The Guardian

The world’s biggest pharmaceutical firms have failed to develop two-thirds of the 139 urgently needed treatments in developing countries, according to an independent report, which highlights the need for medicines including an infants’ vaccine for cholera. The report by the Access to Medicine Foundation, which monitors 20 major drugs companies and the availability of their medicines in low to middle income countries, found that most firms focus on infectious diseases such as HIV/Aids, malaria and tuberculosis …

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Auckland public health takes on junk food ads

Other News 21 November 2018 Matthew Theunissen - Radio New Zealan

Auckland public health officials are on the attack over advertising junk food to children. The Regional Public Health Service has just laid a complaint with the Advertising Standards Authority about an ad for Kinder Surprise chocolate, saying it specifically targets youngsters. But even if it’s upheld, health officials say there won’t be any real consequences. Listen here:

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Otago medical students in limbo after exam cheating claims

Other News 21 November 2018 Morning Report - Radio New Zealand

Third-year medical students at the University of Otago don’t yet know if they’ll have to re-sit their exams after allegations of cheating. In an end-of-year practical exam, students were asked to demonstrate a clinical skill, such as examining a patient. Students were examined in batches and the Otago Medical School says students in the first session told the others what was in store. The university is now investigating which students cheated and what the consequences will be. Caitlin Barlow-Groome is …

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All systems go as Buller signs off on final concept design for new $20 million hospital

Other News 20 November 2018 Keira Stephenson - New Zealand Doctor

After years of wrangling over details, the final concept design for a new health centre to replace Buller’s ageing hospital has been accepted and detailed design work can begin. Health minister David Clark was in Westport today to confirm the $20 million in funding that prime minister Jacinda Ardern had promised prior to being elected. Dr Clark also announced two more beds than first promised and space for the local adult dental service. New Zealand Doctor first reported on the idea of an integrated …

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Auckland children wait months for dental treatment

Other News 20 November 2018 Morning Report - Radio New Zealand

Auckland children with severe and often extremely painful teeth problems are having to wait more than eight months for treatment – double what they should be. Under Ministry of Health standards, all patients requiring specialist appointments should be seen within four months. But Auckland’s regional dental health service can’t meet the timeframe.   Listen here:

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Bogus NZ psychiatrist dupes NHS

Other News 20 November 2018 Nine to Noon - Radio New Zealand

The woman who worked for 23 years in the UK under a false University of Auckland qualification was exposed in three simple phone calls to New Zealand. Zholia Alemi was jailed for fraud in October after she faked an elderly woman’s will in an attempt to inherit her £1.3m ($NZ2.4m) estate. Following the conviction, News and Star newspaper chief reporter Phil Coleman told Nine to Noon he was intrigued to investigate the case further. It was then that he found …

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Otago University defends standard of graduates after medical students accused of cheating

Other News 20 November 2018 Joel MacManus - Stuff

Otago University insists the standard of its medical graduates “has not been compromised” after launching an investigation into cheating claims among third-year students. Third-year medical students are typically divided into groups to sit the four-hour practical exam separately. It is alleged that a student or students who were in the first session may have told other medical students what the content of the exam entailed.   Read more:

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Rival doctors’ unions could lead to more strike action

Other News 20 November 2018 Karen Brown - Radio New Zealand

Junior doctors are threatening more strikes early next year because of a deal with a rival union. In a first for district health boards, they have agreed to different terms and conditions for two rival unions both representing junior doctors. Thousands of junior doctors took to the streets in 2016 and 2017 to protest against long working hours and hospital rosters that they said were unsafe. A hard-won deal led to new rosters that restricted the number of consecutive days …

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