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PlunketLine Here to Stay

28 September 2006

PlunketLine Here to Stay

Plunket today announced its long-term commitment to PlunketLine. Following the end of Ministry of Health funding in June, Plunket had promised staff, families, community groups and supporters it would make a decision about the long-term future of PlunketLine by the end of September.

“PlunketLine is here to stay. It is just too important to Plunket and too highly valued by families to let go,” said Plunket President, Kaye Crowther.

“In the end there was no real decision to be made. Plunket’s commitment to families is not determined contract to contract. It is unconditional. We can’t truly meet that commitment without PlunketLine.

“PlunketLine is absolutely fundamental to Plunket and its funding is a priority. The future of Plunket and its ability to meet the needs of young children and families will depend on our ability to innovate, evolve and to blend our face-to-face services with telephone and other technology-based services, such as web and text,” said Mrs Crowther.

For now, PlunketLine will be funded through a combination of community, corporate and other donors. It is not being funded by the Ministry of Health.

Mrs Crowther offered special thanks to both the PlunketLine staff and those groups and individuals that have offered PlunketLine such fantastic support over the past few months.

“The staff have been absolutely tremendous. Their patience and loyalty has been fantastic and I am delighted we can make this announcement.

“I also need to extend Plunket’s gratitude to all those community groups, health groups, NGOs, political parties, and members of the public that have supported PlunketLine so vociferously.

“This overwhelming support, combined with the large volumes of people continuing to ring PlunketLine for help and advice everyday, provided Plunket with the confidence to keep this important service running,” concluded Mrs Crowther.

Last week, 18 – 24 September, PlunketLine answered 1424 calls. 191 of those calls were not well child calls and were transferred to Healthline, leaving a total number of well child calls for the week of 1233. This translates to an annualised call rate of 64,100. Since July, PlunketLine has taken roughly 1200 calls per week. These call answer figures are similar to those of previous years.

Parents and caregivers should continue to ring PlunketLine on 0800 933 922.

ENDS

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