Happy New Year. Thanks to those who held the fort by working through the break, and to the rest, I hope you had a restful Christmas season. I have to admit feeling slightly cheated when, having put up with three weeks of rain, I arrived back at work last Monday to be greeted by sunshine out the window! But these things happen and I was lucky enough to have a really good break which has left me looking very forward to all that is in store in 2012.
It promises to be a really exciting year at CMDHB with lots of positive change heading our way. As I said before Christmas, there’ll be lots of exciting developments in our work with primary care, particularly focussed on taking pressure off the hospital through the Saving 20,000 Bed Days campaign. We’ll also see the growth of the Clinical Services Building this year, with most of the building taking place in the next 12 months ahead of the opening in late 2013. This progress will bring us a lot closer to having a truly 21st century hospital at Middlemore. And, as ever, we will continue to invest in staff as a fundamental part of how we deliver worldclass healthcare.
The tradition at this time of the year is to take stock and set objectives for the months ahead so I’d by really interested to find out what you think CMDHB’s New Year’s resolutions should be. What are the things that you’d like to see happen? What would you like us to stop doing? What would really improve your quality of working life? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and let’s come up with our own set of resolutions (that we keep through till 2013 of course!)
On that note, thanks again for all the comments I received in response to my blog last year. They didn’t go un-noticed. In fact, in a couple of weeks I hope to make some big announcements resulting directly from the suggestions you made. Watch this space!
Speaking of feedback, I’m very keen for this blog to be more than words. The next step is for it to become a really meaningful way to share – your thoughts as well as mine. I hope this year staff and the wider community will engage and enter into discussion which can lead to action and help our organisation improve.
Next week I want to talk to you about the changes we‘re facing and how they link together. While people are really excited about all the work we’re doing, some have said they’d like to get a sense from me about how it all adds up to the bigger picture. So, next week I’ll be painting that picture for you and, hopefully, beginning to give you an idea of where you fit and the very important role you will play.
Hopefully you’ve read an email I sent out last week about our progress in setting up a transition team to help manage the change ahead of us at CMDHB. One of the team’s key objectives is to ensure we don’t spend money on poor decision making and, instead, put as many resources as possible towards better patient care. I want to point out that this team won’t lead to an increase in managerial costs as it’s important we keep these under control. The team should help put a really effective decision making structure in place so staff are empowered to make decisions rather than relying on a long chain of committees. The team’s work should make life simpler for you, put you more in charge, and contribute towards our efforts to improve your working life.
Of course, as we move to being one of the largest employers in Counties Manukau with a $1b turnover (which would make us one of the biggest companies in New Zealand), the challenge is to ensure we retain our ‘can-do’ culture within this bigger, more formal framework. How do we make sure that we keep the sense of everybody knowing everybody and being one team? How do we take CMDHB to the next phase of its evolution while keeping our unique identity? There are certainly plenty of challenges ahead in 2012.
I’d like to take this opportunity to welcome Dr Gloria Johnson, our new Chief Medical Officer for Hospital Services who started earlier this month. Gloria was previously the CMO at Northland DHB and brings with her a huge wealth of experience as well as a great deal of energy and a fresh pair of eyes.
I’m also pleased to announce the return of Margie Apa. Many of you will remember Margie as our former General Manager – Pacific before she joined the Ministry of Health as Deputy Director General. On her return to CMDHB next month, Margie will be the lead for Strategic Development and will bring many of the skills she’s developed at the Ministry to us and our community.
Finally, I’d like to say how much I’m looking forward to working with you all over this coming year. I’m really confident that this will be an exciting and fun year for us at CMDHB. Even after five years in this role, I still have to pinch myself that I’m lucky enough to be part of the best team I’ve yet worked with in my career.