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Auckland parents turn to Healthline the most

News release

21 July 2008

Auckland parents turn to Healthline the most, figures show

Auckland parents are using the 24-hour free health advice line, Healthline, for parenting advice more often than any other area in New Zealand.

Healthline took more than 5800 calls from the Auckland region in the first quarter of this year. More than one in six calls were for parenting advice.

“We are delighted that Aucklanders are clearly finding the Well Child service useful and convenient,” said Lesley Clarke, General Manager, Healthline.

“Feedback we’ve received is that there are many first time parents who value being able to obtain parenting advice from a registered nurse with a simple phone call. It gives them some confidence to know that we are there to support them.”

Almost 1000 parents turned to Healthline’s Well Child telephone advice service for advice on their children’s health and wellbeing between January and March this year.

The Well Child Advice Line provides parents with almost instant access to a registered Well Child nurse who can give parents information about any aspect of under-fives care, from breast feeding to problems sleeping. The service is provided from the same 0800 number as Healthline.

For one Auckland mum, Meryl Main, Healthline is invaluable. She has used the service for herself, her husband and her three-year-old son, Leo.

“What is most valuable is the easy access I have to free day-to-day care information about my baby. Normally that is the kind of thing you would ask your own mother but since mine is not in Auckland I call Healthline’s Well Child service instead,” she said.

Nationally, Healthline received over 70,000 calls between January and March. The Well Child Advice Service received more than 10 per cent of all calls to the 24-hour free phone service.

All calls to Healthline are handled by registered nurses who assess the callers’ needs and provide advice on what to do. The Healthline nurse will ask a series of questions to determine what type of care is required and then advises on the best course of action. The nurses do not diagnose over the phone.

Healthline, including the Well Child Telephone Advice Service, is available free to all families and caregivers 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Healthline is a confidential advice line for people of all ages – from birth to the elderly – as a reliable source of information for health concerns.

Healthline complements the service offered by other health providers in the community, directing callers to the appropriate health provider within the appropriate time frame.

Healthline, including the Well Child Telephone Advice Service can be reached by phoning 0800 611 116. The service is provided by McKesson New Zealand for the Ministry of Health in association with St John.


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