Care services safe despite takeover

By Tessa Johnstone

Wairarapa Community Primary Health Organisation has been dissolved and funding and co-ordination for primary care taken on by Compass Health, but the community should notice the difference in name only.

Former Wairarapa Community PHO chairwoman Elaine Brazendale said the change, confirmed at the PHO's annual meeting last week, was made to avoid duplication in governance.

The management of the PHO was already provided by Compass and the implementation of the regional health plan Tihei Wairarapa was being overseen by the Alliance Leadership Team, Mrs Brazendale said.

Compass Health, contracted by Wairarapa DHB, will fund and co-ordinate primary healthcare for 40,000 patients in Wairarapa, through seven general practices and a variety of other community clinics and programmes.

"Patients won't notice it. The changeover is from a governance perspective, at that higher level. The benefits are the knowledge base you always have when you come together to share expertise."

Mrs Brazendale has been chosen as the Wairarapa representative on the Compass Health board.

Compass, which has responsibility for a network of 51 general practices across Kapiti, Porirua and Wellington, is led by new chief executive Martin Hefford.

Mrs Brazendale said Compass Health was on board with the region's health plan, Tihei Wairarapa, which focuses on primary and secondary health services working together.

For example, some services that are being provided at Wairarapa Hospital may be better provided at a general practice, she said.


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