To access COVID-19 testing, call 0800 VIRUS 19. For up-to-date information on COVID-19: Click Here

Outreach Nursing Service

What is the Outreach Nursing Service?

Our Outreach nursing service supports general practice to reach vulnerable patients, enabling them to live their healthiest lives. Māori, Pacific, and those in lower socio-economic groups have the worst health outcomes - the Outreach Nursing Service can help you address these inequities. Outreach nurses follow-up patients where usual recall measures have failed, deliver appropriately timed screening and support self-management. Outreach is an important tool to improve health outcomes.

How do Outreach Nurses help Primary Care?

There are many reasons why patients miss screening appointments. These range from accessibility and availability to awareness of services, personal circumstances or negative perceptions. Outreach Nurses work with communities to build relationships. They can be a bridge between general practice and the patient, supporting the person to re-engage.

Brittany Butler, WellSouth Outreach Nurse, says an additional benefit is being able to link people with other much-needed services: “One of my patients was referred following a missed diabetic review. When I realised the social, financial, and mental stress he was under, I was able to introduce him to the health improvement practitioner at his general practice for support.”

The Outreach service is also flexible.  Some appointments are short, one-off visits to follow-up a smear, or nurses may be involved for longer, where there are multiple health concerns and help is needed for them to engage with general practice. Nurses will ask about the health of the whole whānau and have time to listen

The role of an Outreach Nurse is varied and responsive – the team needs to think on their feet and draw on their connections. In this way, the Outreach Nurses are an additional resource for the general practice team.

When should a practice contact the Outreach Nursing Service?

The Outreach Nursing Service is for Māori, Pacific and those in lower socio-economic groups (quintile 5). We contact patients who haven’t responded to previous calls and recall attempts from the practice and those who have missed appointments. Outreach Nursing is a holistic service – a routine screening might be the primary reason for the referral, but we are there to support overall wellbeing and health.

Who is on the team?

WellSouth nurses Racheal Maheno, Brittany Butler, Karen Williams, Sherlie Barnett and Rachel Hall work with practices across the Southern District.

 Referrals: Via ERMS

 

WellSouth Outreach Nursing Service

Brittany Butler

Otago Region

022 102 3868

Sherlie Barnett

Otago Region

022 013 1612

Rachel Hall

 

Central Otago
Queenstown

Rachel.Hall@wellsouth.org.nz

Racheal Maheno

Invers/Southland

022 010 2057

Karen Williams

Invers/Southland

021 401 532

 To discuss how Outreach Nursing Service can work with you, email outreach@wellsouth.org.nz