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Update on Regional Emergency Response to Christchurch Quake

Friday 25 February 2011

Update on Regional Emergency Response to Christchurch Earthquake

Issued on behalf of:
Counties Manukau District Health Board (CMDHB)
Auckland District Health Board (ADHB)
Waitemata District Health Board (WDHB)
Auckland Regional Public Health Service (ARPHS)
Northland District Health Board (NDHB)

Today’s media update on the emergency response and support from the Counties Manukau, Auckland and Waitemata DHBs, Northland DHB and the Auckland Regional Public Health Service. Each organisation’s Incident Management Team continues to work closely to support Canterbury at this time. We are endeavouring to provide regular regional media updates and ask, as much as possible, please do not call during this emergency response phase. Thank you for your patience.

Counties Manukau District Health Board (CMDHB)
• Middlemore is very busy and almost at capacity.
• As CDHB has had to cancel electives for the foreseeable future, we may be taking over the surgical care of cancer patients who cannot be postponed.
• A cohort of the dialysis patients are coming to Middlemore this morning and will be bussed to Whangarei for care.
• Arrangements are being made across North Island for the care of 34 aged-care patients.

Auckland District Health Board (ADHB)

Auckland District Health Board (ADHB) is currently treating eight patients as a result of the Christchurch earthquake.

Four children are in Starship Hospital and four adults are in Auckland City Hospital, including a woman who was not injured in the earthquake but has been transferred with pre-existing injuries to help create space at Christchurch Hospital.

The Incident Management Team continues to work closely with national authorities and has been advised the North Island should prepare to accept around 30 aged-care patients from Christchurch.

We are currently working as part of a regional team to accommodate this request.

Arrangements are also being made to send a seven-person ADHB orthopaedic surgical team from midday on Sunday for 72 hours.

ADHB currently has nine nursing staff on the ground in Christchurch.

Waitemata District Health Board (WDHB)
• WDHB has offered all assistance to National Health Co-ordination Centre and awaits requests.

• The Emergency Systems Planner Dr Jocelyn Peach is coordinating the northern region teleconferences and is working on a number of projects with ADHB and CMDHB.
• WDHB is supporting the dialysis patients that came to Auckland on Wednesday night.
• We are planning for the potential receipt of frail elderly people from the damaged rest homes.
• We are coordinating the names of patients who have arrived from Christchurch so that our Call Centres/Telephonists can answer public enquiries.

Auckland Regional Public Health Service (ARPHS)
ARPHS continues to provide support to the National Health Co-ordination Centre (NHCC) and the Ministry of Health Environmental Health Team co-ordinating the deployment of public health staff to Christchurch.

Medical officers, medical officers of health, health protection officers, public health nurses and emergency response staff have been prioritised and are on standby for immediate deployment to assist with public health functions in Christchurch. One medical officer of health was deployed yesterday as requested.

It is anticipated that public health work in Christchurch will continue for many weeks. Deployment plans for out weeks are being confirmed. ARPHS thanks its entire staff for their unconditional support to the people of Christchurch by volunteering for deployment and managing public health business as usual functions for the Auckland Region.

Northland District Health Board (NDHB)
• Health care services in Northland are ready to support those affected by the recent Christchurch earthquake.
• Intensive care capacity is available and contingency plans are in place.
• Northland DHB's Whangarei Hospital is expecting 11 renal dialysis patients accompanied by caregivers, to arrive in Whangarei for treatment some time this evening. These patients form part of the original cohort of dialysis patients who transferred from Christchurch to Middlemore Hospital on February 24th.
• We have plans in place to not only treat these patients but also provide accommodation and are working closely with our colleagues at the Ministry of Social Development to ensure such patients are able to access social needs such as food and clothing. Manaia PHO have also put contingency plans in place to ensure these patients have access to primary care services in the community.
• Elective surgery and outpatient appointments continue as normal.

Further updates will be provided as necessary. Thank you to all media outlets for your patience.


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