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Collins' Comments

Promoting art and pride in our history and culture is positive for the future of Papakura

I was amazed when I visited the launch of the Awhi Creatures Papakura app at the Papakura Art Gallery. This exhibition involves an innovative use of personal devices like smartphones for viewing art and obtaining extra information and stories about the subject on an app.

Dr Maggie Buxton has developed the app as part of her doctorate which she was recently awarded.

The exhibition requires you to download the Awhi Creatures App and then visit the Papakura Art Gallery to get the clues for seeing the artwork or you can visit the website. Once you have these you go for a walk to find the symbols for the creature portals around Papakura and your phone will show you the creatures and the stories to go with them. The exhibition is available until 30 November 2015.

This type of app is also being developed by Dr Buxton for the Papakura Marae which has recently launched its own portals and stories exhibition around the environs of the marae and in the Wharenui. The app has a number of uses as it encourages groups to visit the marae, allows visitors to find out about the protocols on this Marae and also encourages its own people and especially the youth in the area to learn its history. As it is developed, more stories from the Marae’s whanau and members can be added to the app. It is history in the making and it is an astonishing development in the use of personal devices for educational purposes.

I would like to congratulate Dr Buxton on her innovation and for receiving her doctorate as a result of this fabulous work.

Free telehealth advice

I am pleased that the election commitment made in 2011 to roll out a comprehensive free telehealth advice service with access to nurses, GPs and pharmacists will start on 1 November this year.

The Ministry of Health has appointed Homecare Medical as the preferred provider.

The service will be available 24 hours a day and 7 days per week from 1 November 2015. It integrates Healthline, Poisonline, Quitline, Gambling Helpline, Alcohol/Drug Helpline, the National Depression Initiative, and immunisation advice.

111 calls and PlunketLine will not be affected.

The public will contact the new Telehealth Advice service using current phone numbers. Behind the scenes, the new service will be more seamless and ensure people have access to consistent high quality health advice across the country.

I know free Telehealth Advice will be a very valuable service to families across New Zealand as a first step in seeking medical help for themselves and their family members.

Spring is just around the corner! Best wishes,

Hon Judith Collins
MP for Papakura


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