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Earthquake Update 20 – Canterbury District Health Board

Saturday March 5, 2011. 5.30 pm
This link will take you to important health information. http://www.cdhb.govt.nz/communications/earthquake/documents/Important%20Health%20Information.pdf
or go to our homepage www.cdhb.govt.nz to check previous Earthquake Updates.
Or you can follow us on www.facebook.com
MSD Emergency Welfare Centres
Pioneer Stadium welfare centre is the sole remaining Ministry of Social Development (MSD) welfare centre, open 24 hours a day seven days a week for the foreseeable future. Pioneer Stadium can take up to 600 people, had 101 yesterday, expecting another 100 today.
Non-MSD welfare centres are established in Ashburton, Rapaki, Rehua Marae, and Tuahiwi.
Six Recovery Assistance and Information Centres (RAICs) will open in the eastern suburbs and to offer information and services. More recovery assistance centres will open next week.
City access
The Central City cordon will be reduced on Sunday 6 March 2011. The Central City has been organised into four Green Zones on the outer edges of the existing cordon and one Red Zone in the very centre.
From 2pm on Sunday 6 March, Green Zones 1 and 2 (south east and south west of the city) will be opened for public access and the cordon will be reduced. The public are urged only to travel into the area if they need to access their properties or homes. This is to ensure residents and business owners have priority access to the area.
14,000 customers (5%) remain to be reconnected to power and are expected to be by end of Sunday, March 6. Brighton substation is operational again. All 51 ‘zone’ (main) substations are now operational.
78% of homes are now connected to mains water. The aim is to have 90% reconnected by mid-March. The city’s water supply remains chlorinated but please continue to boil all water used for drinking, teeth cleaning and food preparation. Over 1000 water tests have been carried out, but 30 have still failed so it’s important that you continue to boil drinking water. Chlorination will cease once repairs have been completed, and the water supply is safe.
The city's waste water system is proving difficult to repair and little progress has been made so far.
Details of locations are of water collection available at http://canterburyearthquake.org.nz/water-tanker-timetable-for-deliveries/. Residents must take their own containers and remember to boil water before use.
You can also collect hand sanitiser, health information and facemasks from the tankers.
Waste management
From 7-11 March green organics bins (organic waste only) and red rubbish bins will be collected across the city, even if it is not the usual red bin collection day. Human waste (solids only) can be put in the red bin but must be well wrapped in paper or a plastic bag.
Christchurch City Council will also resume its usual collection of the yellow recycling bin this week according to the normal schedules.
Portaloo and Chemical Toilets
A portaloo distribution map can be found here: http://eqviewer.co.nz/index-portaloos.html
Heavy traffic on the roads is causing difficulties in delivering portaloos and chemical toilets, as well as cleaning and emptying.
A total of 1141 portaloos have so far been delivered to Christchurch. A further 60 are being delivered today and another 60 on Monday 7 March.
960 portaloos are due to leave the US over the weekend for delivery to Christchurch.
4000 chemical toilets are in Christchurch and are being delivered based on need. Another 5000 are due on Tuesday March 8th.
A total of 4000 chemical toilets have arrived in Christchurch and delivery began on Wednesday, with an estimated 2000 delivered. A further 5000 will arrive from China on Tuesday 8 March.
A further 20,000 chemical toilets have been ordered. These are currently being manufactured at 1000 per day and will be air freighted 8000 at a time. It is still to be confirmed when they will be delivered Storage tanks will be placed at a central location for people to empty their chemical toilets.
Important public health information 5 March 2011
Boil or treat all water from taps and tankers before drinking, brushing teeth, or using in food preparation. Bringing water to the boil is sufficient to kill bugs. If you cannot boil water, treat it by adding 1 teaspoon of household bleach per 10 litres of water and leave for 30 minutes.
Waterways are contaminated with untreated sewage. Avoid contact with rivers, sea water, ponds, puddles or other surface water. Do not swim, paddle, fish, or gather shellfish or any other food from oceans and rivers.
In many parts of the city sewerage pipes have broken and untreated sewage has mixed with liquefaction silt. People should avoid silt if they can, particularly if they don’t have running water to wash after contact. If people have to work with silt they should wear water-proof gloves, gumboots and a dust mask; shower or wash immediately afterwards; and wash clothes separately.
Take care when disposing of human waste (faeces, poo, vomit etc). Bury it in your garden or wrap it well in paper or plastic and put it in your red bin for collection. Wash your hands immediately after dealing with any human waste.
Wash your hands or use hand sanitiser after toileting, and before and after eating or preparing food. Free hand sanitizer is available from official water tanker sites.
If you get sick move to somewhere that has running water at a friend’s or relative’s place. Running water (for hand washing and toileting) is important in preventing the spread of illness.
If you are sick try to limit contact with other people, do not go to work and do not prepare food for anyone. The majority of GPs in Christchurch are now open to treat minor injury or illness. Dial 111 for emergency medical attention.
Take extreme care with food – particularly with food that should be refrigerated. Dispose of smelly, slimy, mouldy or discoloured food immediately. Do not refreeze food once power returns.

Canterbury hospitals
Christchurch hospital has 319 patients, with 8 in Intensive Care. Ashburton has 36 patients, and Burwood 62.
Emergency attendances at Christchurch Hospital have averaged around 150 a day since last Thursday, around 80 people a day less than usual. While able to see anyone who requires emergency medical care, staff thank the public for keeping the emergency department for emergencies.
All Canterbury District Health Board buildings – safety
All hospital buildings have been checked by independent structural engineers. Other than those which are closed off or have restricted entry (clearly marked by tape, cones etc.) the buildings have been assessed as safe to occupy. ‘Green stickers’ are being placed on the buildings.
Christchurch Hospital
Detailed information on the availability of Christchurch Hospital services can be found on the Canterbury DHB website www.cdhb.govt.nz or follow us on www.facebook.com.
General Medical patients – one of the General Medical wards at Christchurch Hospital’s Riverside building has temporarily relocated to The Princess Margaret Hospital Ward 3B.
Levels four and five of Riverside block are closed because of water damage sustained during the earthquake. Some services on those levels four and five will resume later next week.
All patients currently presenting at Christchurch Hospital who require care under General Medicine will be transferred to Ward 23 or Ward 26 at Christchurch Hospital, or to 3B at The Princess Margaret Hospital for their inpatient care. If you are uncertain about the location of your family member or friend, please call patient enquiries on 364 0600.
Transferred patients – Canterbury patients transferred to hospitals in other parts of the country are to remain there in the interim and this arrangement will be reviewed towards the end of next week.
Elective surgery – Although limited elective surgery will resume on Monday, March 7, there will be some patients who are still required to have their surgery performed at other hospitals. Patients will be contacted regarding arrangements.
Media are not to access Christchurch Hospital or staff without permission – ALL media queries must be directed to the Canterbury DHB Strategic Communications Team. Please phone (03) 337 7390, or 027 502 7523/ 027 531 4796.
Vulnerable People
A 24-hour ‘Transit Lounge’ has been set up at The Princess Margaret Hospital, which will triage older vulnerable people in the community who have high health or disability needs. The Transit Lounge will provide assessment and coordination of services. Access to the service is through single point of entry (SPOE) 337 7765.
The families of all older people transferred out of the region have ALL been contacted.
Alternative arrangements are being made for children with disabilities who require respite care. Families are being contacted.
There have been 56 notifications of gastroenteritis since February 27. This is consistent with the number of notifications for this time of year. The incidence of gastroenteritis remains sporadic, with no large clusters indicating an outbreak. However, the number of cases may be under reported and people with symptoms are urged to seek medical advice.
Do not swim in rivers and beaches where raw sewage may be present. Locations include all beaches between the Waimakariri River and Lyttelton Harbour. The affected beaches include:
Spencer Beach
Waimairi Beach
North Beach
New Brighton Beach
South Brighton Beach
Christchurch Estuary
The beaches at Sumner and Scarborough
Taylor’s Mistake Beach
All beaches in Lyttelton Harbour.

Free Urgent Medical Treatment Extended

If you are unwell, visit your General Practice team. If your health issue is earthquake related, your visit may be free. This arrangement is in place until the end of Sunday 13 March.
This is being funded by the South Island DHBs.

The urgent medical care offer is also being generously matched by major North Island general practice networks Procare in Auckland, Wellington's Compass and the Midlands Health Network (covering Taranaki, Waikato, some of Lakes and Tairawhiti). Christchurch evacuees in the North Island should ring first to check the initiative is being offered at their nearest practice.

In recognition of GPs support, DHBs are waiving the usual deduction on Canterbury practices when their patients are treated elsewhere until March 13.
General Practices and Pharmacies
Ninety four percent of General Practice Teams in Christchurch are now open, and 93 percent of pharmacies are open. Demand for pharmacy services has been high with up to 900 prescriptions a day being processed in some areas.
To find out whether your general practice team (GP/ Doctor) or local pharmacy is open, ring them first.If your general practice phone number is not working or you do not have a usual general practice, ring 365 7777.
For emergencies and life threatening conditions ring 111.
The ‘A Message Of Support’ (www.AMOS.org.nz) website has been established with the help of Datam and NZ Post, where messages of support can be posted for health workers involved in the response to the Christchurch Earthquake.
The website is a response to many requests from health professionals and others from all over the world wanting to send messages of support to those at the frontline. Many people have benefitted directly from the efforts of staff and often want a way to say thank you.
The site will carry stories about the work people are doing and visitors can post messages up to 350 characters long on a general site or address it to specific areas such as the Intensive Care Unit or the Emergency Department.
Through this site, people can also leave messages for other agencies such as Police, Fire, Red Cross and Civil Defence.

ACC - people wanting to know what their entitlements are: 0800 101 996

Healthline - health advice 24-hours a day, seven days a week 0800 611 116
Red Cross- 0800 733 276. People who have relocated outside of Christchurch are urged to contact the Red Cross.
Urgent mental health advice Psychiatric Emergency Service on 03 3640 482 or 0800 920 092
Urgent Dental Care if you can’t contact your own dentist 335 4260. After hours 027 683 0679
Meals on wheels 337 7797
Vulnerable older people that urgently require assistance because of health or disability needs should contact Older Persons Health on 337 7765 for assessment and advice
Relocated older people – if you are unable to contact their usual aged residential care provider to confirm their location, please phone 337 8937 for information.
Dialysis helpline 0800 881919.
Ambulance 111
Pegasus 24-hour medical centre in Bealey Avenue – 365 7777

Water collection locations http://canterburyearthquake.org.nz/water-tanker-timetable-for-deliveries/

Christchurch Hospital Services Canterbury DHB website www.cdhb.govt.nz

Check on your neighbours and keep in touch with family and friends
At times like this it’s important to look out for elderly neighbours and others who live alone.
Emotional responses to the recent crisis
It’s normal to be feeling very stressed at the moment. Everyone is affected in different ways. Some of us may feel very anxious or low in spirits. Some of us may feel it’s hard to function. If you are worried about yourself or a family member, please talk to someone in your general practice team. They can call on a wide range of mental health and counselling services, and more counsellors are being brought in to help.

Coping strategies - stress and anxiety The Ministry of Health has created a series of fact sheets with advice and coping strategies for people experiencing stress or anxiety in the wake of this week's tragedy. These can be found on the Ministry's website - www.moh.govt.nz - under the banner headline ‘Christchurch Earthquake’
Mental Health Nurses are available to provide support in the community. Please phone your GP Team for information.

© Scoop Media

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