Gulf News Article: Retirement villagers all good for check-ups with new onsite health clinic

From the Waiheke Gulf News on 14 May 2020

Before Covid-19 changed the way health care is delivered on Waiheke, much of the care on the island was already provided outside of the medical clinic. This ranged from home nursing visits to Well Child visits in the home, to support groups for people with diabetes and other chronic health conditions.

Covid-19 has accelerated this growing trend of providing care in the community. There will always be some healthcare consultations and procedures that are delivered in the traditional settings of a doctor’s office or at the hospital, but much can be more conveniently provided in the home, the school, the workplace and virtually, using technology to connect providers and patients. Waiheke Island healthcare providers are onboard with this trend and feel that providing this care is not only convenient, but can result in better care.

GP Shelley Stansfield moved to Waiheke in February to join Ostend Medical Centre. Prior to that, Shelley worked as a GP in Upper Hutt for 24 years and had a strong interest in older persons’ health, including providing onsite services to rest home facilities. Since arriving on Waiheke, Shelley has been working closely with Erica Wright, the nurse practitioner at the centre¸ to set up a similar service at the Waiheke Retirement Village, and last week they held the first onsite clinic together at the village.

Libby Kruis, manager of the retirement village, said that feedback from people who attended the clinic was very positive. “Our residents loved the convenience of it and how relaxed it was being in their own surroundings. They were also very impressed with how thorough the consultations were. The clinic will especially benefit those residents who find it challenging to get to the medical centre.” Erica said that the positive experience worked both ways, “Shelley and I really enjoyed running the clinic at the village and were pleased with the uptake from the residents. Being able to meet with the GP or nurse in their own home environment can make it easier for people to be able to talk about all aspects of their health and what is important to them.”

Most importantly, residents at the village thought the clinic got off to a good start. “I enjoyed the onsite clinic appointment for the convenience, friendliness and professionalism,” said Brenda Upton. Elaine McQuilkin, another resident added, “It was amazing. It wasn’t rushed, and they were very thorough – I went to get my eye checked and they gave me a thorough full check and completed all the routine screening.”

Retirement village residents Anne Thornbury (seated) and Elaine McQuilkin – who are both in the same bubble – now have the option of an onsite clinic.

Source: Waiheke Gulf News

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