Last week I talked about our values – wanting to embed our values of Together, valuing everyone, Excellent and Kind. This week I received, absolutely coincidentally, a letter from The Right Reverend John Bluck, retired Anglican Bishop of Taranaki, and previously Christchurch. This letter tells of his Middlemore experience, following a nasty accident with a drop saw while making a Christmas gift for one of his grandchildren. Rev Bluck’s honest account of his stay at Middlemore in the plastics ward under the care of Plastic Surgeon Murray Beagley, to me epitomises what we are trying to achieve and why I love this job so much.
Happy New year and welcome back. I hope that you, like me have had a great break and are looking forward to the new challenges that this year will bring.
We reached some other very important decision points at the end of the year which we will build on this year. The pace of change will increase this year as we put some key initiatives in place – including the key areas of localities and community hubs, in particular redesigning integrated care and how we can improve our use of technology to modernise out-patient and referral practices.
Pae continues to grow stronger every day
My final blog this year is about a 15-year old boy called Pae, who was admitted to Middlemore Hospital with two life threatening conditions. Thanks to his supportive family and incredible teamwork by the staff looking after him, Pae defied all odds and continues to grow stronger every day. Pauline Owens, Stroke Nurse Specialist shares Pae’s story.
It was a rainy Friday evening when Pae, was brought into Emergency Care. Pae collapsed at home and was found by his grandad, unconscious and barely breathing. On arrival to Emergency Care, Pae was examined by senior doctors from Emergency, Medicine, ICU and Neurology, and following a series of tests was found to have a stroke on his brain stem and an unstable neck fracture. Both of these life-threatening conditions left Pae unable to speak, or move his arms or legs – all while being aware of what was going on around him. The fear was that Pae was not going to make it and if he did his quality of life would be extremely poor. He was to prove everyone wrong.
Each month I look forward to ‘welcome day’, where I get to meet and welcome new staff to our organisation. One of the things I like to talk about is relationships. CM Health is a fantastic organisation and we are on a great journey of positive change and improvement. However to make change happen you need to have a relationship with someone. It’s hard to have a relationship with someone you don’t’ know and although I would love to personally meet everyone who works here, with over 6,500 staff it’s a big challenge. But there are ways I can establish a virtual relationship, which is why our blogs (CEO, Team Counties and Ko Awatea) and social media channels are so important, not only to share information but to stimulate conversation.
Geraint presents Maria with her certificate
Last week I was fortunate to be invited to Pukekohe Hospital for a coffee and a chat. While I was there, I made a surprise presentation to a lovely lady called Maria Burch. Maria works at Franklin Memorial Hospital and has been a Health and Safety representative for the past five years. Along with 19 safety reps from across the organisation, Maria was recognised for her contribution to keeping our workplace safe for our patients, visitors and staff. Maria received her award for outstanding health and safety engagement and service.
In fact, Maria is so dedicated to her job that she nearly missed the presentation. When asked if she was coming, she said she would be late as she had a health and safety audit to complete – now that’s dedication. I’m joined by Maria to tell us more.
Today (3 December) CM Health celebrates International Day of Persons with Disabilities, a United Nations sanctioned day that celebrates progress in breaking down barriers, opening doors, and realising an inclusive society for all. I’m joined by Ezekiel Robson, who is passionate about raising awareness, understanding and acceptance of people living with disabilities and their achievements. Ezekiel has been a community appointed representative on CM Health’s DiSAC (Disability Support Advisory Committee) for the past ten years, and recently joined our Patient & Whaanau Centred Care Consumer Council.
I grew up in Manurewa, so South Auckland is what I have always known. Growing up in this multicultural community, with a high proportion of maaori and pacific people gives me a particular ‘lens’ on the world. I have always had a vision impairment, and while there is no treatment, I have learned to find alternative ways to navigate the world around me, which relies so heavily on visual interaction. Many people may consider this a disability but it’s just another part of me, and my uniqueness – not all impairments ‘need fixing’ or can be ‘fixed’.
Emeritus Professor Sir John Scott KBE FRSNZ
26 June 1931- 20 October 2015
Earlier this month, at a Memorial Service, we paid tribute to Professor Sir John Scott, one of the truly great physicians of New Zealand medicine. While he touched the lives of many Professor Scott excelled as a physician, a teacher, a researcher and a medical leader.
Dr Briar Peat had the pleasure of knowing and working with Professor Scott over a period of 20 years. Briar shares her memories of this much admired and loved man.