This booklet looks at a new policy direction for health, introduced two years ago, which creates an environment where health professionals in the community are actively encouraged to work with one another, and with hospital-based clinicians to deliver health care in a co-ordinated and co-operative manner so that more services are delivered in the community, people wait less for services and are kept healthier in the community.
Treatments which were once hospital-only are increasingly being performed in the community by GPs and practice nurses who have received additional training from hospital specialists. Examples you’ll see in this booklet include intravenous antibiotics to treat the serious skin disease cellulitis, surgery to remove skin lesions and giving GPs direct access to diagnostic imaging (instead of having to refer patients to hospital for that imaging).
Professional boundaries are also changing, enabling tasks to be done in a way which frees up the time of our most highly trained professionals and our hospital services to focus on patients with the most complex needs.
The booklet includes examples of the innovation and ingenuity which community-based health professionals have already brought to this new approach to health - things they are now able to do to provide better, sooner and more convenient health services to the people of this country.
'Better, Sooner, More Convenient Health Care in the Community' is dedicated to New Zealand’s primary health care workforce - the GPs, nurses, pharmacists, physiotherapists and other health professionals in our communities who are making a real difference in creating better health services in your community.