Northland Long Term Conditions Governance Group report

Northland Faculty Board member Mark Lankshear sits on the Northland Long Term Conditions Governance Group. His report from its latest meeting is below.

"I attended the Northland DHB Long Term Conditions Group last night as a GP rep.

This group oversees DHB work streams to improve care of people with LTCs.

At last night’s meeting there were a number of things of note.

There is a plan for integrated education sessions with primary and secondary workers around diabetes care and initiating insulin that are hoped to happen in July / August.

Although there is some frustration about slow progress, there are ongoing efforts to improve delivery and access to both Cardiac and Respiratory rehab – the funding group have asked for these to go through a “co-design” process before approving further funding. Although challenging there are efforts being made to take this forward, with a suggestion to use Kaikohe as a possible area to try out the co-design process and with efforts to link this with the Neighbourhood Health Care Home initiatives.

Also regarding respiratory conditions there is ongoing work to try to improve access to spirometry. There has been progress with some nurses receiving training in Christchurch and work will be ongoing to look at issues around local workforce training and accreditation before proposals can be taken forward to try to ensure locally available equipment and testing – I will be advocating hard for this to be available in primary care.

The gout pilot is almost ready to be rolled out and pharmacists are being actively recruited – funding seems largely in place and we are at the stage of final reviews of the protocols for medication packs prior to training for pharmacists / GPs and ensuring local arrangements are in place where community pharmacists have expressed willingness / ability to participate.

There is very early work being done around dementia pathways and looking at roles for ‘navigators’ to assist people through services – the thought being they would probably take a wide role in supporting access for people with a range of LTCs rather than focus solely on dementia.

We also reviewed the LTC element of the DHBs annual plan which is almost complete.

As ever if anyone has any opinions / questions / feedback for the group I would be happy to convey this / try to answer questions."