It was a beautiful drive up the west coast on day 6 of the Yes We Care roadshow, and we managed to get the drone up for some stunning shots along the way. But heavy traffic along the rerouted number 1 highway meant we were running a bit late for our nelson action. Luckily we had a good number of people ready to help setup outside Nelson hospital, which also proved to be our busiest traffic location so far.
A staff member spoke to me about the increases in patient volumes coming through the emergency department as a result of the road rerouting from the Kaikoura earthquake. More road traffic crashes and a high number of tourists put an increased strain on their department. They also faced issues of staffing, specifically a lack of staff when people call in sick and hiring freezes due to budgetary constraints.
I found it interesting that they have an afterhours urgent care clinic right next to the emergency department, which on the surface seems like it would be a good idea. But due to the cost and often lengthy wait times, it gets bypassed and people go straight to the emergency department. This is an increasing issue nationwide, as 1 in 9 kiwis can’t afford to see their family doctor, waiting until things are really bad, or going straight to the emergency department placing increasing pressure on health services there.
Do you have a story you want to share? We’re always looking for more, and are building up an archive as we travel the country. Go to YesWeCare.nz/share-your-story