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BPJ 45 August 2012

Best Practice Journal

Managing skin infections in Māori and Pacific families

Compared to other developed countries, New Zealand has one of the highest rates of serious skin infections, particularly among children. Over the past decade, the number of children admitted to hospital for treatment of serious skin infections has doubled. Māori and Pacific families are most at risk, therefore targeted education, prevention and control interventions are necessary in order to reduce this burden of disease. View Article

Pertussis: an avoidable epidemic

This article is out of date. Please see: Pertussis: halting the epidemic by protecting infants for updated information

New Zealand is currently in the midst of a pertussis epidemic. Identifying and treating patients with pertussis early is important in limiting the spread of this potentially fatal infection. Pacific children have a high burden of disease, with almost 30% of pertussis infections resulting in hospitalisation.
View Article

The management of community acquired pneumonia

Pneumonia is a significant cause of hospitalisation and mortality among both children and adults in New Zealand. Māori and Pacific peoples are at an increased risk of pneumonia, compared to other people in New Zealand. Prompt identification and treatment will enable patients with less severe community acquired pneumonia to be managed at home, reducing hospitalisation and mortality. View Article

How to plan a catch-up immunisation

Although immunisation rates among Māori and Pacific peoples continue to increase, there is still room for improvement, as immunisation rates in New Zealand lag behind many other developed countries. Misinformation about vaccines, lack of information or poor understanding of the diseases being immunised against, barriers to accessing health services and recent immigration to New Zealand all contribute to incomplete or absent immunisation histories. It is important to actively identify children, and adults, who have missed immunisations and plan and implement a catch-up programme. View Article

Addressing weight issues in young people and families in New Zealand

New Zealand is one of the most overweight countries in the world. The proportion of people who are overweight or obese is highest among Māori and Pacific peoples. It is important to address this issue from a young age, in order to avoid the health and social consequences of obesity later in life. Talking about weight can be difficult, however, obesity is one of the most significant preventable health problems in New Zealand, and clinicians have a duty of care to discuss it with patients, as with any other health issue. View Article

New Zealand Formulary launches

New Zealand healthcare professionals now have their own medicines formulary View Article

Disparities in the use of medicines for Māori

Recent research into the use of medicines in New Zealand has revealed major differences in the number of prescriptions dispensed to Māori compared with non-Māori. View Article

New service model for community pharmacy

PHARMAC announces changes to dispensing frequency rules in line with new pharmacy services to support patients' medicines adherence and compliance. View Article

Upfront: Understanding health literacy

Contributed by Susan Reid and Carla White, Workbase View Article