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External Medical Advisory Group Appointed

28 August 2006
Media Release

Southern Cross Appoints External Medical Advisory Group

Nine health professionals have been appointed as the first members of Southern Cross Medical Care Society’s new External Medical Advisory Group.

The group will be consulted about trends in the health sector, how to encourage quality and evidence-based healthcare, what Southern Cross’ priorities should be, relations with medical practitioners and how to best assist Southern Cross members.

The group includes medical professionals representing a wide range of specialities from as far a field as Dunedin, Wellington, Palmerston North and Auckland.

The members are Dr David Benson-Cooper, Radiology; Professor Helen Danesh-Meyer, Ophthalmology; Dr Jonathan Fox, General Practice; Dr Patrick Frengley, Internal Medicine; Mr Grant Kiddle, Orthopaedics; Dr Michael Kluger, Anaesthesia; Mr Andrew Lesperance, Nursing; Dr William Rainger, Public Health; Mr Scott Thomson, Physiotherapy.

Southern Cross Group Chief Executive, Dr Ian McPherson says the group is an important way for the organisation to keep in touch with the health sector.

“The advisory group will be a touchstone to where the New Zealand health system is going, and where Southern Cross needs to be in response.

The health landscape is ever-changing, with new technologies, techniques, issues, funding constraints and a constant drive for quality care. As the largest funder of private surgery in New Zealand we want to make sure we are ahead of the curve and prepared for change where appropriate,” he says.

Southern Cross says it had a strong field of candidates from which to choose. Applications were sought from a wide range of sources including many medical societies and associations. This resulted in significant interest from around 50 highly qualified and experienced professionals.

The group’s first meeting is on September 4 with two meetings scheduled each year.


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