Intensive clinics to clear overdue urology appointments



wo intensive weekend ‘megaclinics’ at Dunedin Hospital in November and December are expected to clear the backlog of patients who are overdue for urology assessments and procedures at Southern DHB.

Wednesday 25 October 2017

Two intensive weekend ‘megaclinics’ at Dunedin Hospital in November and December are expected to clear the backlog of patients who are overdue for urology assessments and procedures at Southern DHB.

The first clinic will be held on 18-19 November, and the second on 9-10 December. It is expected these will enable 200-300 appointments per day, including first specialist assessments, diagnostic procedures and potentially some surgeries.

The clinics have been supported by the New Zealand Urologists (USANZ) who have organised to bring 10 additional urologists and 10 specialist nursing staff from around New Zealand to support the intensive clinics. Urology Associates in Christchurch is assisting the organisation of the clinics. They will join Southern DHB clinical nurse specialists and urologists from Southland and Dunedin, as well as anaesthetists and administrative, sterile services and theatre staff, enabling 14 clinic rooms to operate concurrently.

“We appreciate the huge efforts of our staff and colleagues from around the country in enabling these clinics in the interests of our patients, as part of addressing the challenges in our urology services,” says Southern DHB CEO Chris Fleming.

“As well as our immediate focus on providing care for those patients who have been waiting too long, we also need to ensure the systems and resources are in place to avoid a similar waiting list developing again in the future.”

The clinics also provide an opportunity to implement improved processes in Dunedin’s urology service, enabling patients who are found to need a cystoscopy or biopsy to receive it at the appointment, avoiding additional waits for treatment. This is an important aspect of improving the service long-term, Fleming says.

Vice President of USANZ, Mr Stephen Mark says he is pleased to support the DHB’s efforts to address the wait times in its urology service, while Southern DHB Clinical Lead Al Hepburn says he is “extremely grateful for the support shown by Stephen Mark and our colleagues from around the country”.

“These extra sessions are a short term solution that is needed to see and treat patients who have waited too long. This will allow us to concentrate on the urgent implementation of a long term plan to ensure a future system that will not let this happen again,” Mr Hepburn says.

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