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Giving thanks to our eHealth IT All Stars is encouraging readers to show their appreciation for some of the unsung heroes of the health system’s response to Covid-19 – IT staff and teams.

Ministry of Health deputy director general Shayne Hunter is the first to says thanks on behalf of the Ministry, “to the many people and organisations who have stepped up big time, in what can be described only as extraordinary circumstances.

He says, “people who work in the areas of ICT, data and digital have been vital to stopping the spread of COVID-19 and keeping New Zealanders safe and working”.

Examples include; enabling people to work remotely and access health services through virtual consultations; accelerating the move by the sector to the cloud and Microsoft and AWS platforms; developing apps and other tools to enable new ways of working; providing or enabling access to timely data and information; removing paper from key processes; and much more.

Hunter says, “it has been humbling to see people coming together so quickly, and in ways we haven’t seen before, to solve problems and deliver new services, and maintain business continuity.

“The hours worked and the effort has been huge.

“Our challenge now, as we start to think about the move to lower alert levels, is to take on board what we’ve learned, lock in and harness the great things we’ve achieved together and build on this,” he says.

National Telehealth Leadership Group chair Ruth Large agrees that IT teams need a vote of thanks, saying “it has been the IT staff pulling the all-nighters to keep the health system running”.

If you have an individual or team you would like to thank, email your message to eHN editor Rebecca McBeth along with a short description (100 words or less) of the hard work you’ve appreciated over the past couple of months.

These messages of support will be published on and some individuals will be invited to participate in a webinar to share their stories and answer questions about their work.

Read Shayne Hunter’s full message of appreciation here.

© Scoop Media

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