Turanga Health unites with agencies to support a māmā and her pēpi

Turanga Health is a Māori health provider in Gisborne. In the story below, they discuss the benefits of working across agencies to provide a united approach to patient care. It’s a great example of how providers can be innovative in their approach to quality improvement.

A mother of 3 with a new baby on the way presented one of the most complex back stories Tamariki Ora nurse, Janneen Kinney, had ever come across. With mental health, addiction challenges and a history of domestic violence, the baby was going to be a joyful but stressful addition to her life.

‘I first met her before baby was born and then I became more involved when she required postnatal care … it was about how to best wrap support around her to meet her needs,’ says Janneen.

Kay Walker, Kaiāwhina

Multiple agencies have been involved in the care of the mother and baby including Tairawhiti District Health, Ministry for Vulnerable Children, Oranga Tamariki, Recovery Solutions and Addiction Services.

Clinical Nurse Coordinator Karen Staples says Turanga Health strives to integrate its services to better help individuals and whānau. ‘Staff are using their knowledge of our services, as well as Medtech and our reporting systems, to make sure each person is getting all the help they can.’

She says client-centred collaborative health care is the key to integration, ‘inter-professional team work can strive to achieve positive outcomes.’

Kay Walker, Kaiāwhina, also spent time with the new mother. ‘She’s had lots and lots of services to help her,’ says Kay. As the trust built up, Kay was also able to help her with travel to GP appointments along with grocery shopping.

Working in a more joined-up way does have its challenges says Karen, ‘it’s about knowing how much information has to be exchanged within each organisation, and between each organisation, and we are all still learning.’

Work has also taken place to improve communication between the agencies so that double-ups with appointment times can be prevented.

Staff from Turanga Health say māmā and pēpi are doing well. The mother has come under the care of Tuhono Whanau Ngati Porou and is receiving help with budgeting, housing and child development.

This story was originally published in the October 2014 issue of Manawaru, the Turanga Health newsletter.

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