Tēnā koutou katoa

Greetings from sunny Riverton, where I am spending this week working at Riverton Medical Centre again. Its a great team and its really nice to be ‘back on the tools’. I hope you had a good Easter break, and feel ready to crank into those flu vaccinations, as well as measles, pertussis  and general catch up vaccines, not to mention Covax for some of us. It's a busy pre-winter this year! Check out the Southern Nursing Excellence Awards – we have so many amazing nurses working in our general practices and community providers, please consider taking a moment to nominate one of your colleagues for these awards.


Key points today:

  • CLIC & Quick CLIC allocations

  • April Falls awareness month and ACC Nymbl app launch

  • Southern Nursing Excellence Awards

  • Improving childhood immunisation rates

  • Pacific Trust Otago (PTO) Vaccination Clinic

  • Funded casual consultations for displaced people ended midnight 10 April

  • Central Lakes mental health crisis support service launched

  • SCOTS programme

  • New Health Pathways

  • 2023 Australasian Menopause Society (AMS) Congress - Registration, Call for Abstracts, Travel Grants & Scholarships Open!

  • GPNZ Primary Care Clinical Digest – April 6, 2023

  • A reminder about Covid booster eligibility

  • Podcast of the week - The One Thing You Can Do For Your Well-being


What’s new

CLIC & Quick CLIC allocation top-ups

As we enter the final months of the financial year, we are aware that some practices have utilised their allocations in one or both of long-term conditions management programmes, CLIC or Quick CLIC.  We can work with you to consider adding additional allocations to see you through to the end of June 2023.

If you have used or are close to using up your funding, please make contact with either your practice relationship manager, or one of our WellSouth Long Term Conditions nurses (Marryllyn  Donaldson Marryllyn.Donaldson@wellsouth.org.nz, Dave Cox Dave.Cox@wellsouth.org.nz or Rachel Hall Rachel.Hall@wellsouth.org.nz)to request a top up.

They will work with you to understand how you use the programme(s) in your practice, what amount will be sufficient to support your patients until 30 June and if there are ways that our team  can provide you additional support. Our team use a template to gather the relevant information and they will work through this with you at the time.


April Falls awareness month and ACC Nymbl app launch

‘Get active and improve balance for fall prevention’ is the campaign goal the WellSouth Falls and Fracture prevention team are promoting around Otago and Southland this April Falls month.

“April Falls” is an annual campaign to raise awareness of the impact of falls and to promote the latest fall prevention strategies.

This year April Falls is marked by the release of an ACC funded app called Nymbl, a personalised app for older adults wanting to maintain or improve their balance from the comfort and safety of their home.

To celebrate the release, the WellSouth Falls and Fracture Prevention team are hosting “Nibbles and Nymbl” events across Otago and Southland.

They are inviting the public to come down and join them to enjoy nibbles, try out new strength and balance exercises, and test out the Nymbl app.

Nibbles and Nymbl:  

Dunedin City Library from 11am – 1pm, Tuesday 18 April
Alexandra New World Lobby from 12pm – 2pm, Wednesday 19 April
Invercargill Public Library from 11.30am – 1.30pm, Tuesday 2 May 

Read the full story here.


Southern Nursing Excellence Awards

Thursday 11 May - Invercargill

Friday 12 May - Dunedin

The Southern Nursing Excellence Awards are being held on the 11 May (Invercargill) and 12 May (Dunedin) and are open to all nurses working within the Southern district catchment area across all settings and providers.

Nominations are now open for these awards and will close at 5pm, Wednesday 26 April 2023.

Applications can be submitted by individuals or teams by submitting the attached nomination form by email. Please note only individuals can receive awards.

Nominees will be invited to the awards event in Invercargill or Dunedin where award recipients will be announced.

Please read the document linked below for categories and criteria, and the nomination form is attached to this email.

Southern Nursing Excellence Award Categories and Criteria


Improving childhood immunisation rates

Te Whatu Ora is appealing for your help to increase childhood immunisation rates after a number of near misses and warnings since the beginning of the year.

Dr Nick Chamberlain, National Director, National Public Health Service outlines in the attached letter how they are working to increase these immunisation rates, including an increase of the immunisation fee for all childhood immunisations to $36.05 until 30 June 2023.

Please read the full letter here.

You can read the Immunisation Taskforce Report here.


Pacific Trust Otago (PTO) Vaccination Clinic

10am – 3pm, Saturday 5 April

Pacific Trust Otago, 16 McBride Street, Dunedin

Pacific Trust Otago is holding a vaccination clinic this weekend with a number of vaccinations on offer, no appointment is required, and everyone is welcome.

There will be a Q&A session about immunisation, sausage sizzle, and the chance to win grocery vouchers every hour.

Vaccinations on offer:

  • COVID-19 for ages 5 years and over

  • Influenza

  • Measles, Mumps and Rubella

  • Tetanus, Diphtheria, Whooping Cough

  • Human Papillomavirus (HPV)


Funded casual consultations for displaced people from adverse North Island weather events ended midnight 10 April

Te Whatu Ora’s funding for consultations for displaced people ended as of midnight Monday 10 April. This means that primary care co-payments and charges have returned to BAU.

Though this funding has ended, there will continue to be people displaced for some time who may require assistance. MSD and MBIE have separate funding streams to support these groups.


Central Lakes mental health crisis support service launched

Te Whatu Ora’s new Central Lakes mental health crisis support service, provided by Central Lakes Family Services, fully launched this week.

The service offers better access to crisis support for people in the Queenstown Lakes and Central Otago region.

For those needing crisis support the service can be accessed in one of two ways:

  • GP Referral

  • Referral from Te Whatu Ora Southern’s Specialist Mental Health and Addiction team (available to call 24/7)

The crisis support service will predominately be available for adults aged 18 years and over, there will also be flexibility to provide services for younger people from time to time if needed.

Central Lakes Family Crisis Support Service Brochure

Central Lakes Family Crisis Support Service Overview

Central Lakes Family Crisis Support Service Referral Form


SCOTS Programme

You may have read about The Southern Community Orthopaedic Triage Service (SCOTS) in the Otago Daily Times recently. It is delivered by Te Whatu Ora Southern, and is a service that allows patients with persistent knee or shoulder pain to be seen within days of being referred to the programme, rather than waiting for an orthopaedic assessment at Dunedin Hospital.

The SCOTS programme is currently available at two providers, South Dunedin (Habit Health) and Mosgiel (Sportsmed).

Any GP can refer any patient that is both willing and able to undertake the programme at one of the locations.

The service acknowledges that the current locations limit participation from many regions, and if funding allows, they hope to expand the service to further areas in the future.


New Health Pathways

There are three new Health Pathways available on Southern HealthPathway’s website.  The editor team of local GPs do a great job of working on these, thanks team. Please take a few minutes to familiarise yourself with these new additions linked below.

Epilepsy in Children and Young People 

New Onset Seizures In Children

Seizures with Fever In Children


Upcoming conferences

2023 Australasian Menopause Society (AMS) Congress
Registration, Call for Abstracts, Travel Grants & Scholarships Open!

1 – 3 September 2023

Millennium Hotel Queenstown

The 26th Annual Australasian Menopause Society Congress is being held from 1 – 3 September 2023, at the Millennium Hotel in Queenstown.

Registration is now open, early registration rates finish 10 July 2023. Click here to register.

The theme of the Congress is “Remarkable reflections on midlife and menopause”.

The Call for Abstracts is now open, authors are invited to submit abstracts for 10-minute oral, 4-minute rapid fire or poster presentations for consideration by the AMS Scientific Programmes Committee, abstract submissions close 12 June 2023. Find out more: https://amscongress.com.au/2023-abstracts

AMS Scholarships and Travel Grants are also open, with applications due by 12 June 2023, more information can be found here.


Other general information

GPNZ Primary Care Clinical Digest – April 6, 2023

In this issue:

  1. Imms Taskforce Report: Initial Priorities for the National Immunisation Programme in Aotearoa 

  2. Pertussis Clinical Update

  3. Funded Casual Consultations for Displaced People – Ending Midnight April 10

  4. Temporary Supply Issue of Rifinah 100.150 mg tablets 

  5. COVID-19 Antivirals: The Role of Molnupiravir in New Zealand’s Funded Treatments Portfolio

  6. Update for Pharmacists in General Practice week ending March 31 2023

  7. Top Weekend Viewing

The email is attached here if you would like to read through any of the updates above.


Covid-19 updates

Southern Numbers

Covid is rearing its head again – yesterday and today we had over 300 Covid cases recorded each day (the graph below captures yesterday’s cases only). This is the first time since 5 January that we have had this number of daily cases.



A reminder about Covid vaccine booster eligibility

With the rise in Covid, here’s a quick reminder about boosters:

For more details, including about boosters in people under 30,  go to



Podcast of the week

This week’s podcast is not about clinical things, but about self care for us as health professionals. It is a short 12 minute listen, titled The One Thing You Can Do For Your Well-being. Listen to it at


Its from a podcast series that looks at different aspects of how we can look after ourselves in our busy, at times stressful jobs - aptly titled  ‘You are not a frog’. Take a moment to have a listen.


So we all have a busy winter ahead of us. I’d encourage you to join me in thinking through what you need to keep yourself happy and healthy through the coming months. Keep connected with those things and people that keep you in a good space. I’m going to have more coffees with my best mates, keep going to the gym and maybe crack out a jigsaw. And remember to talk to your family, friends or colleagues if things are getting tough.


He waka eke noa, we are all in this together.


Ngā mihi nui