Contingency planning has ensured that Palmerston North Hospital continues to provide all acute and emergency services, as well as a number of outpatient and elective appointments over the current strike period.
Dr Kenneth Clark, Chief Medical Officer said: “We’ve still seen steady numbers of people come through the emergency department today. While people should still visit ED if they need emergency care, we are encouraging people to continue accessing alternative health services, such as their community pharmacy, general practice, or accident and medical centres, where appropriate. A list of alternative options for people is available on our website www.midcentraldhb.govt.nz.
“The contingency planning that occurred before the strike action means that all acute and emergency services are running as normal. However, with around 120 junior doctors on strike, we have had to postpone a number of outpatient appointments and elective surgeries, to have sufficient staff to ensure safe and effective care in these services.
“Over the strike period around 400 clinic appointments and 75 elective surgeries have been impacted. This number includes those that were booked and have been postponed, and those that could have been carried out over these days, but were not booked, knowing strike action was probable. We wanted to avoid inconveniencing patients by booking appointments, only to postpone them a couple of weeks later.
“We have notified all patients by phone as to whether their appointment has been postponed or not, and we are working to rebook all postponed appointments at the soonest possible dates. If you were meant to have an appointment during this time, and have not heard from us about your appointment, please ring the hospital as soon as possible on 0800 PN HOSP (764 677).”
Contact: Communications Unit (06) 350-8945