Board proposes NZNO should be politically neutral.
Subject: Nurses (Political aspects)
Nurses (Compensation and benefits)
Pub Date: 10/01/2010
Publication: Name: Kai Tiaki: Nursing New Zealand Publisher: New Zealand Nurses' Organisation Audience: Trade Format: Magazine/Journal Subject: Health; Health care industry Copyright: COPYRIGHT 2010 New Zealand Nurses' Organisation ISSN: 1173-2032
Issue: Date: Oct, 2010 Source Volume: 16 Source Issue: 9
Topic: Event Code: 280 Personnel administration
Product: Product Code: 8043100 Nurses NAICS Code: 621399 Offices of All Other Miscellaneous Health Practitioners
Organization: Organization: New Zealand Nurses Organisation; New Zealand Nurses Organisation
Geographic: Geographic Scope: New Zealand Geographic Code: 8NEWZ New Zealand
Accession Number: 241179385
Full Text: Leadership:

NZNO Policy Book: Board and conference resolutions on rights and obligations will be added to the new NZNO Policy Book.

Position statement on District Health Board (DHB) mergers and shared services: The board adopted a position statement on DHB mergers and shared services, developed in consultation with all member groups. The statement identifies conditions required to be met if a merger is to gain NZNO support, including: regional synergy; consultation with staff, unions, tangata whenua and communities; sound economic and human resourcing rationales for proposals; impact analysis; strategies for directing financial savings into clinical resources; regional approaches to specialisation with quality and safety underpinning decisions; no increased costs to patients; opportunities to broaden services across sectors and communities; enhancement of services to all patients; clinical leadership and support being maintained, and minimal disruption for frontline clinical staff and patients.

Relationships with political parties: NZNO's Nursing and Midwifery Committee (NMAC) has drafted a position statement on NZNO's relationship with political parties, following an approach from one party. The statement reads: "It is important for members to have information on political parties' manifestos related to health. NZNO will not align the organisation with any one political party and will remain politically neutral; further that there should not be any formation of Memoranda of Understanding (MOUs) with any political party. NZNO will support its membership to be politically aware, but not influence its members in their decision making." This position statement will go out to members for consultation.

CTU Fairness at Work Campaign: The board agreed to donate $10,000 to the Council of Trade Union's Fairness at Work campaign.


Areas of current concern include:

* Health care assistants (HCAs) could be exploited and put at risk by inappropriate expansion of their roles, while enrolled nurse (EN) numbers are being cut. NZNO will ask directors of nursing about their plans to support the expansion of the EN workforce.

* Concern was raised about access to treatment for members experiencing mental ill-health. The Ministry of Health funds treatment for impaired health care workers, but some areas with high needs are having trouble getting appropriate treatment.

* A student survey showed bullying is still occurring, particularly for Maori students. Two schools of nursing are reported to have almost no bullying. This is being studied to find out how it could be replicated in other schools.

* NZNO needs a strong delegate base and the profile of the immense work done by delegates needs to be raised. Better understanding of the role, including the professional benefits, will help recruit workplace delegates.

Consent agenda:

The board approved:

* NZNO's position statement on midwives, updated to reflect changes under the HPCA Act (2003).

* NZNO's position statement on breastfeeding, updated to take in current conditions, including the support of baby friendly hospital (BFHI) and baby friendly community initiatives (BFCI).

* The National EN Section rule changes which remove the title of nurse assistant, reflecting that "EN" is now the only title for the second-level nurse.


Board appraisal: The board undertook a self-appraisal focussed on five areas: monitoring, performance and strategic direction, board obligation, board meetings, meeting preparation and directors and chairs. The results showed the board functioning well. A board effectiveness training day will be held in December with a repeat appraisal next May.

Review of approvals and delegations policy for national sections and colleges: The board endorsed the revised policy on approvals and delegations for national sections and colleges. It clarifies the level of decision-making and authorisation for national sections and colleges when entering into contracts, memorandi of understanding, joint ventures etc and ensures a clear information flow within the organisation when communicating with external agencies.

Financial report: NZNO finances are generally tracking favourably. Unfavourable variances related to outsourcing of legal work to meet increasing workload, and use of temporary staff to meet workload demands. All staff are looking at cost-effective ways of working and some savings have been identified. IT expenditure has risen due to the recent upgrade of the IT systems.

Annual plan review: The board reviewed the 2010-2011 Annual Plan, which acknowledges NZNO achievements but also recognises the challenges in the current health environment and matching services to the demands of a growing membership. The board acknowledged the high quality of annual plans from sections, colleges and regional councils.

Audit and risk committee: The board's new Audit and Risk Committee has met for training and developed terms of reference.

Te Rau Kokiri Update: TRK postcards were distributed for signing at the primary health care conference. The response was great and many postcards were taken away by members to their regions. A flier has been developed to support the introduction of the postcards. In June, employers reaffirmed their commitment to TRK at a hui. Further meetings are being arranged to keep members informed and engaged with regional and local activities. The working group's goat is to conclude bargaining by early October. TRK spokespeople are to receive media training for upcoming stakeholder presentations and local campaign events.

A presentation at the 2010 Te Runanga o Aotearoa annual general hui and the NZNO conference would inform members of the campaign and how they could support it. TRK also launched its T-shirt at the hui, which can be bought through regional offices.

Joint meetings: The board and te poari held a good discussion at their first joint meeting in June. Joint meetings provide an opportunity to learn and work on common issues related to nursing and the political environment. The board is still working on the processes for achieving the partnership and memorandum of understanding.

Safe Staffing Healthy Workplaces: A new poster has been produced depicting the seven elements required in a healthy workplace and it will be used to raise awareness, and educate and empower members. Each of the seven elements will be profiled at two-monthly intervals. The DHB sector will be working on implementing the Healthy Workplaces agreement and using local bipartite action groups as one vehicle for progressing the seven elements.

South Pacific Nurses' Forum: Members are encouraged to attend what should be an excellent conference, in Auckland, November 8-11.

This is an edited report of the NZNO board of directors' meeting in August. It was supplied to Kai Tiaki Nursing New Zealand by the board.
Gale Copyright: Copyright 2010 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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