Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


More Investment Needed In Public Health

New Zealand public health doctors are calling for increased sustained funding to public health units to enable them to respond effectively to public health emergencies such as the COVID-19 threat.

Public health units are at the forefront of dealing with the COVID-19 response and are responsible for monitoring the progress of the disease, contact tracing of those who have been in close contact with someone with COVID-19 and implementation of containment and control activities. These activities are vital to effectively slow the spread of the disease.

However, budgets for public health units have not been increased in many years. Even without the impact of COVID-19, resources are very limited, which affects New Zealand’s ability to respond to this outbreak and to others like the recent measles and mumps epidemics. More funding, and a more sustainable funding model, is needed to support to public health units in this work, says the New Zealand College of Public Health Medicine.

“There are now more than 115,000 people confirmed to have COVID-19 virus worldwide”, says the College President, Dr Felicity Dumble. “And this figure is likely to increase. The World Health Organisation has declared that this is a pandemic.”

The College says that experience in China and Singapore shows that, with the right strategies, it is possible to contain the spread of COVID-19. The Ministry’s response to the worldwide outbreak has been appropriate to the level of infection in NZ at this stage. However, even with the low number of cases to date, public health units are under enormous strain. Since the spread of the virus is expected to continue for a considerable period, additional resources will be needed to manage the load and to prepare for future similar emergencies.

The College points out that since outbreak will impact across all sectors of society, a non-partisan, whole of government, approach will be needed to deal with the outbreak over the coming months.

“Political commitment and leadership, strong governance, and an intersectoral, whole-of-government approach is what is needed, along with increased investment in public health” says Dr Dumble.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Our Weird Ways Of Funding Care For The Dying

National Party leader Judith Collins thinks the government’s traffic light system for emerging from Covid lockdowns is “confusing.” Perhaps she could be looking in the mirror because in recent weeks, National has hardly been a model of crystalline clarity. On RNZ this morning Collins was calling for the scrapping of all vaccine certificates and mandates once we hit 90% double dose vaccination. Yet in recent weeks, Chris Bishop, National’s Covid spokesperson has been indicating that vaccine certificates and employment mandates will be, and should be, part of our new Covid landscape... More>>

Covid-19: Two Cases Notified In Christchurch Last Evening

The Ministry of Health was notified last evening of two positive COVID-19 cases in Christchurch from the same household. One member of the household had recently returned to Christchurch from Auckland. The local public health unit is gathering information from the cases to identify close contacts and exposure events, including any locations of interest... More>>


Government: Considers Regulatory Safeguards For Three Waters Services
Public feedback is being sought on the regulatory safeguards required to ensure consumers and communities receive three waters services that meet their needs, Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister, Dr David Clark announced today... More>>

Three Waters: Government To Protect Vital Public Water Services For Future Generations
Local Government Minister Nanaia Mahuta today confirmed the Government will create four publicly owned water entities to ensure every New Zealander has access to affordable, long-lasting drinking, waste and storm water infrastructure... More>>


Government: Responds To Independent Review Into WorkSafe

The Government has clear expectations that WorkSafe must action the recommendations of the independent review into the regulator to improve its management of adventure activities following the tragedy at Whakaari White Island, Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Michael Wood says... More>>

Government: First Step In Managed Isolation Changes; Expanding QFT With Pacific

The Government is starting a phased easing of border restrictions that will see the time spent in an MIQ facility halved for fully vaccinated overseas arrivals from 14 November and home isolation introduced in the first quarter of 2022 at the latest, Chris Hipkins said today... More>>





InfoPages News Channels