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New emergency radio network installed

New emergency radio network installed

3 July 2014

Following lessons learnt from the Canterbury earthquake, MidCentral DHB has completed the installation of an emergency radio network at important sites across the district.

During the February 2011 earthquake, both landline and cell phone services were severely disrupted for many hours, and information on health services was difficult to obtain. Because of this, MidCentral DHB has expanded a radio telephone system at community facilities operated by MDHB, to include strategic general practices in the network.

MDHB and Central PHO can now communicate directly with these facilities during both power, and normal communication outages. The system was installed by local communications company Over and Out. An important aspect of their network repeater stations is having solar backup power, should there be a major power outage. The radios also have back up power supplies as part of the system.

MDHB Regional Primary Health Emergency Planner Barry Simpson is happy to have this new equipment in place, as part of the DHB’s primary health disaster preparation.

He said: “It is very important to learn from the lessons of previous natural disasters. The Canterbury earthquake showed that communication networks can be very vulnerable to disruption, and we have installed these new radios to provide a way for emergency communication to continue, even in the worst case scenario.”

This radio network will compliment the emergency preparedness of the MidCentral region. In 2010, Mass Casualty Kits were also provided by MidCentral DHB to strategic practices across the district,

The locations of the new radio telephones include:

Otaki Medical Centre Horowhenua Health Centre
Masonic Village Foxton Medical Centre
Pahiatua Medical Services Dannevirke Community Hospital
Clevely Centre Massey Medical Centre
Radius the Palms City Doctors
Albert Street Medical Centre Whakapai Hauora
Central PHO MidCentral DHB Emergency Operating Centre


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