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Health Target Results In Bay Of Plenty

31 August 2011

Health Target Results In Bay Of Plenty

Today the Minister of Health released the quarter four-year end results of the health targets for the 2010/11 year. The health targets were introduced as a way of improving the performance of health services and provide the health sector, both secondary and primary, with a clear focus for action.

The fourth quarter year-end results report on our progress for the months of April, May and June and the national average for all 20 DHBs.

We have made substantial progress towards meeting our targets.

The most rewarding is to see our immunisation rate rise by 7.5% to 87%, the largest increased performance of all 20 DHBs.

We also exceeded our total population target of 85% with 87% coverage. In addition, our Māori immunisation rate rose to 88%.

This performance reflects the focussed efforts of the teams working to increase our childhood immunisation uptake.

• The Western Bay PHO is using Facebook and a Wellchild Virtual Network to locate parents of children who are overdue for immunisation.
• Tauranga Hospital staff are now asking all parents if their children are up to date with their immunisations.
• The three PHOs are visiting the general practices to encourage better performance.
• Midwives are working with the National Immumisation Register staff to ensure home births are registered.
• The Tuesday t-shirt campaign continues across the Bay of Plenty. This campaign involves immunisation professionals such as GPs, nurses, pharmacists, lay advocates, immunisation coordinators, community workers, hospital staff and DHB staff wearing t-shirts promoting immunisation.
• GPs computer systems have been brought up-to-date and compatible with the National Immunisation Register (NIR) and their staff are using the NIR.

The media has also been supportive of the work of our health professionals in our endeavours to raise the immunisation levels of our children.

Despite immunisation being recognised as one of the most effective ways of preventing a range of infectious diseases, immunisation rates among New Zealand children had been low for many decades and this has contributed to regular outbreaks of illnesses such as measles and whooping cough.

However, what we have learned is that to increase our immunisation rates our health professionals need to be constantly focused on immunisation, staff and midwives need to take every opportunity to promote immunisation to parents, supported by regular media and other reminders.

Bay of Plenty District Health Board health target results for 2010/11

Target Area
Quarter four 2010/11
Improvement on previous quarter
Ranking %
Shorter stays in Emergency Departments 13 90 1.4%
Improved access to elective surgery 9 104 357 patients
Shorter waits for cancer treatment 1= 100 Same
Increased immunisation 17 87 7.5%
Better help for smokers to quit 19 77 10.0%
Better diabetes and cardiovascular services 13 72 1.1%

Improved access to elective surgery

Another excellent result for us, in lifting our performance above the national target to 104%, retaining our ranking and achieving 357 more surgeries than planned.

Shorter stays in emergency departments

While our rank has dropped to 13 our performance has increased to 90% an increase of 1.4% on the previous quarter.

The number of people coming to our Emergency Departments at both Tauranga and Whakatane hospitals for treatment continues to grow and this puts increasing pressure on the staff to meet this target (that 95% of patients will be admitted, discharged or transferred from the ED within six hours).

We are continuing to look at how we can improve our performance and a significant amount of work, often involving creative thinking, is going into addressing this target.

An Integrated Operations Centre (IOC) has been set-up.

This involved co-locating operational and clinical staff to work collaboratively to address problems. We have also developed on-line reports drawing on real time data to enable a whole-of-hospital status-at-a-glance. The purpose of these reports is to support our clinical teams who are too busy with patients, to see who is presenting at the front door, and where patient demand on the system is exceeding capacity. This information also allows for variance response plans to be implemented to ensure quality of patient care is maintained. Using forecasting tools, we can better prepare for the peaks and troughs through scheduling, changes, and rostering adjustments.

The IOC is designed to support clinicians and staff who are providing care (cleaners, nurses, radiologists, laboratory technicians, and pharmacy staff) to improve the acute patient journey. We have had representatives from other DHBs visit our IOC and others have let us know they are also keen to visit.

Shorter waits for cancer treatment

From January 2011, this health target requires that everyone needing radiation treatment will have had their treatment within four weeks. Previously it was within six weeks.

Working to the shortened time the target was met.

This result is continuing good news for the people in the Bay of Plenty.

Better help for smokers to quit

In this quarter, we have had a marked improvement in our getting better help for smokers to quit with a 10% increase on the previous quarter. This is a direct result of the new initiatives the staff have developed which include, a quit pack has been developed for ED staff to use, new systems put in place and staff training being approached differently.

Smoking rates of people coming into our Bay of Plenty hospitals has been higher than the national average, at 22.30% (Census 2006) and this has reduced to 18.25%, however, we will have to wait for the 2013 Census to confirm the rate.

Better diabetes and cardiovascular services

The continuous improvement in this target is pleasing.

This health target is made up of three distinct components; diabetes detection and follow-up, diabetes management and cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk assessment. The target table does not discriminate between the results for each measure; it is solely an average of the three measures.

For this quarter, our ranking has improved three places to 13 with a 1.1% increase.

These fourth quarter results clearly demonstrate a commitment from the staff to provide better quality services for our patients.

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