TDHB “sets record straight” on closure of Hawera Emergency Dept

In a release to media, Taranaki District Health Board Chief Executive Rosemary Clements has said the Hawera Emergency Department will NOT be closed to the public.

Taranaki DHB reassures the people of South Taranaki that Hawera Hospital’s Emergency Department (ED) is NOT closing to the public.

Rosemary Clements, Taranaki DHB CE says, “It’s disappointing there are some community leaders spreading misinformation that is simply not true and Taranaki DHB wants to put the record straight.”

“We are proposing that people visit Hawera ED for emergencies and urgent health issues while people with non-urgent health issues visit their GP, not ED. This is not and never has been about closing Hawera ED to the public.

It is about people accessing the right care in the right place at the right time.” “While the DHB has its financial challenges this is not all about savings targets either”, reassures Mrs Clements.

“We recognise the fragility of general practise services in South Taranaki but we anticipate that
with some DHB investment we can make improvements to GP access.”
For well over a year, the DHB has been meeting with the South Taranaki Community forum and South
Taranaki Health Sector, including Pinnacle (the Primary health organisation), St John, GPs, including Ngati Ruanui Medical Centre and local Iwi to determine what help and support the DHB can provide the primary care sector to help address GP appointment timeframes and other service issues.

“Our DHB has been making good headway with these groups to address a very complex range of issues but
we need these discussions to continue in a constructive way to ensure improvements to General Practise can
be achieved.” Mrs Clements says, “Taranaki DHB knows all too well that providing GP health services from an ED leads to poorer health outcomes for patients, particularly those with complex health and social needs. Right now, this is having the highest impact on Māori, children and those living in socially deprived communities and this
needs to change.”

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