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MDHB does well with national health targets

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MidCentral District Health Board has equalled or bettered three of the six national targets for the April to June 2015 quarter.

​Those targets are: Shorter stays in the Emergency Department, improved access to elective surgery, and better help for smokers to quit (in hospitals). It improved, but did not achieve the targets for faster cancer treatment or for more heart and diabetes checks.  The results for immunisation and for better help for smokers to quit in primary health remained the same; not yet achieving targets.  Results for all 20 DHBs were released today.

A summary of our results across all the national health targets this quarter is provided below.

Close to 96% (9629) of 10,057 people who attended the Emergency Department (ED) were admitted, discharged or transferred within six hours of presenting – much the same result as the previous quarter, even with a slightly higher volume of patients and again achieving the national target (95%).  Over the 12 months to end of June 2015, 40,369 people attended the Emergency Department – only 13 fewer than the previous year.  As a result of some large scale service improvement activities across the hospital this year, as well as working more closely with our general practice teams, we have been able to ensure 38,020 people had shorter stays in the Emergency Department – 2370 more than last year. 

Over this quarter, another 1599 patients were discharged following their elective surgery bringing the total number of patients who have had their elective surgical procedure over the last 12 months to 6985 – delivering 107% of our planned target for the full year.  More people had their planned surgery for procedures such as a hip or knee replacement or for carpal tunnel syndrome, cataracts or other eye conditions, removal of skin lesions, or bowel, gallbladder and urinary system surgery, for example.  About 12% of our patients had their planned surgery at other hospitals that provide specialist surgery to residents of our district, like Wellington for heart surgery and Hutt Valley for plastic and burns surgery.

We are making steady improvements in our results for faster cancer treatment.  For this latest period, 76% of 63 patients for whom there was a high suspicion of cancer and needed to be seen within two weeks had their first treatment within 62 days of being referred (results cover those patients who received their first treatment between January and June 2015). 

The national average was 68% against the goal of 85% by end of June 2016.  This target focuses on a sub-set of patients who are referred through a managed, outpatient pathway.  Our aim is to continue making steady improvement toward this target by examining referral guidelines and pathways to earlier diagnosis and treatment that will ultimately benefit all cancer patients.

The hospital component of the national health target for offering advice and support to quit smoking was achieved again this quarter, with a result of 96%.  Of the 4705 adult patients admitted to hospital who smoke (about 15% of all admissions), 4517 patients have been offered brief advice and support to quit smoking over the past 12 months. 

The result for providing better help for smokers to quit in the primary health care setting remained much the same as last quarter, at 82% of the 17,434 enrolled population who smoke and seen by general practice teams over the past year; still behind the 90% target.  Central PHO has a number of best practice initiatives underway to support general practice teams improve in this important health target area and is addressing some technical capacity and information technology issues that are stalling progress with any significant gains.  Te Ohu Auahi Mutunga – our provider collective – also continues to encourage and support smoking cessation services across our district.

Our result for eight month old infants being fully immunised on time was similar to last quarter at 94% - just short of the 95% target – but remained above the national average.  A small drop or no change in the rate this quarter was similar to the experience of other DHBs.  Over the year to the end of June, 1992 of 2114 eligible infants had had their full immunisation by eight months.
We have noticed an increase in the number of infants who have at least one of the vaccinations across the primary three-vaccination course being declined.  Our immunisation team, including general practices and outreach services, continue to work together with families to promote the immunisation programme and ensure the vast majority of our children are immunised against vaccine preventable diseases.
The proportion of our enrolled population that have had their risk for cardiovascular disease assessed in the last five years increased this quarter.  Although there were another 1101 heart and diabetes checks undertaken between April and June, the proportion of the total expected number to have had a risk assessment fell short of the 90% target, at 87% of the 47,482 eligible enrolled adults.  Central PHO is continuing to support General Practice Teams and our Maori and Pacific health providers to enable more people to have a heart and diabetes check to minimise the risk of them having a heart attack or stroke in the next five years.
For more details and FAQs about the Health Targets go to: and the 'MyDHB' website.
Contact: Communications Unit (06) 350-8945

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