COVID-19 Update Learn more

Community News

MEASLES INFORMATION

We now have a case of measles in Taranaki,

This is being managed by our public health unit to reduce the risk of measles spreading in the community.

Symptoms of measles:  7-14 days from exposure, include a fever, cough, runny nose, sore and watery pink eyes. This is followed by a blotchy rash a few days later,

Advice to concerned people:

Check your MMR vaccination status.

People are considered immune to measles if they have received two doses of measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) vaccine, have had measles previously, or lived in New Zealand before 1969. 

Call the clinic to get vaccinated if you have had only one MMR vaccination and were born after Jan 1969.

You Doctor will  likely arrange an phone consults, they will discuss with you coming into the clinic if you need to. 

Contact healthline or your clinic in the first instance. 

FREE VACCINATION CLINICS

Carefirst are partnering with Tui-ora and Te Whatu ora to provide free vaccination clinics at our Moturoa Medical Centre, all vaccinations for all ages – FREE. Everyone is welcome.

29th July and 26th August – Moturoa Medical Centre – Giveaways and a sausage sizzle for everyone

You don’t have to be a patient with us – everyone is welcome. You can enrol on the day if you want to join our practice.

Below is a useful link, it gives some advice and ideas about working effectively and efficiently with your GP…they are a precious resource!

https://www.thepress.co.nz/a/nz-news/350006183/how-to-preserve-your-gp-for-future-use

FLU VACCINATIONS

THE FLU SEASON IS JUST AROUND THE CORNER – BE PREPARED BY GETTING YOUR FLU VACCINATION
FLU VACCINATIONS ARE AVAILABLE FOR EVERYONE FROM MONDAY 3RD APRIL 2023.


Below is a list of criteria that makes a patient eligible for a FREE flu vaccinations:

*  Children 6 months to 12 years (inclusive)
*  Pregnant people
*  People aged 65 years and older
*  Maori and Pacific peoples aged 55 to 64 years
*  People aged 6 months to under 65years with an eligible health condition
*  People aged 6 months to under 65 years with serious mental health and addiction conditions

Carefirst encourages all patients to book in for a flu vaccination.  If you are not eligible for a free flu vaccination the cost is $28. 
To book an appointment for a flu vaccination please phone the clinic on (06) 7539505.
Kind Regards

The Carefirst Team

OUR WELLNESS WALL

https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/health/131160377/a-wellness-wall-to-encourage-discussions-about-mental-health

PRIDE IN HEALTH

A new website has been launched by a group of medical doctors that is aimed at providing guidance for everyone working with the rainbow community. We are all motivated to ensure that our LGBTQIA+ patients receive safe, proactive and appropriate healthcare. Thanks to Dr Ari Chuang and his team for their work on this. Check out the link Pride in Health

COVID UPDATE

Carefirst Westown is offering all eligible patients a second booster dose of the Covid-19 vaccination.  You can book online at bookmyvaccine.covid19.health.nz. 
 
We are strongly encouraging all our eligible patients to get a second booster dose, and especially older people/kaumatua (+65yrs). 


Please check your eligibility on the My Covid Record where you can access your vaccination dates. 

You can have your second booster if:

* It has been 3 months since you have tested positive for Covid
   AND
* It is 6 months since your first Covid booster


You can get a booster dose by:
* Making a booking through Book My Vaccine at bookmyvaccine.covid19.health.nz – (choose 99 Tukapa Street as the location) or by phoning 0800 28 29 26

Current evidence shows that your immunity decreases over time after the Covid vaccine. A second booster dose is recommended no earlier than 6 months after your first booster. 

WINTER ILLS ARE HERE

Winter is here and as we know coughs, colds and flus are extremely common. We are seeing many people with colds and infuenza.  It means we have very few appointments available for semi-urgent or routine care, as we have to make more appointments available for flus. Coughs, colds and flus are usually caused by VIRAL infections of the nose & upper airways, and they affect most adults 2-4 times per year, kids 5-6 times and those in preschool up to 12 times a year!

Wearing a mask when you are in indoor spaces can help reduce the odds of you catching a virus from someone else.

IF YOU GET A COUGH, COLD OR FLU:

  • Stay at home
  • Do a Covid RAT test. These can be negative at the start of a Covid illness so if symptoms continue, you should re-RAT every 24-48 hours until you are better


SYMPTOMS:
https://www.healthnavigator.org.nz/health-a-z/c/cold-the-flu-or-covid-19/

  • Blocked or runny nose (yellow or green snot is common, and green snot does not need antibiotics)
  • Sneezing
  • Feeling generally unwell, tired, headache and achey muscles
  • Fever
  • Cough (dry or productive). Having a cough does not mean that it has ‘gone to your chest’ or that you necessarily need antibiotics
  • Sore throat. If you are at risk of Strep throat (see https://www.healthnavigator.org.nz/health-a-z/s/strep-throat/) please contact us for advice.


Symptoms are typically at their worst for 2-3 days and then gradually clear. However, the cough may carry on after the infection has gone and last for 2-4 weeks as the inflammation gradually settles.

HOW TO FEEL BETTER:

  • Have plenty to drink, rest and stopping smoking and drinking alcohol if applicable!
  • Take paracetamol or ibuprofen for pain
  • Salt (saline) nose drops for babies & vapour rubs for kids and adults can help with nasal congestion in some cases. Older kids and adults can use Otrivin for a few days to ease blocked noses
  • Some people find other over the counter cough remedies from the pharmacy can help them manage their symptoms (note there is no evidence that these help particularly); please always discuss safe use with pharmacy
  • Honey before bed can ease a cough a little
  • If you need pharmacy medications please send someone who is well to get them for you. Sick people need to stay home so they don’t spread their infection to others


Antibiotics do not get rid of colds and your immune system usually clears the infection. In some cases antibiotics are needed; such as for those with underlying lung disease.

WHEN TO WORRY:
Symptoms to consider contacting our nurses about include;

  • Wheezing or breathlessness (including if symptoms don’t respond to your normal inhalers if you use these)
  • Severe headaches, especially if associated with vomiting, a stiff neck, a rash or difficulty looking at bright light
  • Chest pain
  • Coughing up blood (or if sputum dark or rusty-coloured)
  • Becoming drowsy or confused
  • Fever lasting more than five days. Or a fever that goes and then comes back
  • Dehydration (not passing urine regularly)
  • Cough persisting for longer than 3-4 weeks
  • If you have a child that has gone downhill and you are worried, please call and speak to a nurse


We are always happy to provide advice and see sick people when needed. If you are unsure, please call and speak to a nurse for help.

VACCINATION:

  • It’s not too late to get a flu vaccine! From July 1 it is also free for children aged 3-12, and those with mental health or addiction concerns.

https://www.health.govt.nz/your-health/conditions-and-treatments/diseases-and-illnesses/influenza/flu-influenza-vaccines/getting-flu-jab


NPDC RESOURCE WISE BUSINESS PROGRAM

Carefirst Westown are making a conscious effort to reduce waste within our medical centre.  We are taking part in NPDC Resource Wise Business Program.  This program is part of a trial for businesses who are interested in reducing the amount of waste they send to landfill. 

We are delighted to have achieved ‘silver’ stage following an audit of our waste management processes.  Over 55% of our waste has been diverted from landfill and has been recycled or composted.  Now we are working hard to achieve ‘gold’ stage!

BEING PREPARED FOR OMICRON IN OUR COMMUNITY

It is only a matter of time before positive cases of COVID-19 in the Taranaki community are increasing. Most people who get COVID-19 will have a mild to moderate illness, and will fully recover in their own home. For those who need help, the healthcare system will always be available.

Being ready for getting COVID-19 is about making sure you and your household have a plan and know what to do. It will mean your whānau and community can help each other if needed.

Below is a helpful link from the covid website that will help you and your whanau to be ready.

COVID-19-Readiness-Checklist.pdf (covid19.govt.nz)

BOOSTERS – ELIGIBILITY NOW 3 MONTHS POST SECOND VACCINATION

The government have reduced the interval between a person’s primary vaccination course and the booster from 4 months to 3 months – starting this Friday, 4 February 2022.

Book on line at Bookmyvaccine.co.nz or drop into our Westown clinic to have your vaccine. No appointment is necessary.

This is a significant step in our response to the COVID-19 pandemic as it now means a total of 3,063,823 people aged 18 and over – two thirds of our population – will be eligible for their booster from this weekend. Over 1.3 million people have already got theirs.

The Government is urging every New Zealander who is eligible for a booster to get it as soon as possible. We are in a race against Omicron and the more people who are boosted the more we can reduce the impact of the outbreak.

Bringing forward the booster timing will help those who have been immunised more recently. It will mean more people, especially Māori, will be able to receive a booster before Omicron takes hold in communities.

Boosters lower your chances of getting very sick from the Omicron variant of COVID-19 and ending up in hospital. Fewer hospitalisations from COVID-19 will mean our health system can continue to provide the full range of care people need, in particular for our most vulnerable such as people with disabilities or long-term illnesses.

CHILDREN WEARING MASKS

The Carefirst group ask that all eligible patients wear a mask when in our clinics.

The ministry has now mandated that all children from year 4 and older are required to wear masks when at school and in the classroom.  Please note that bandanas, scarves etc are not acceptable as a mask.

If you are concerned about your child wearing a mask you should discuss this in the first instance with your child’s school.

Please refer to the below website for more information about children wearing masks.

https://www.education.govt.nz/school/ministry-bulletin-for-school-leaders-he-pitopito-korero/#sh-masks

Please refer to the below website for more information about mask exemptions

https://covid19.govt.nz/prepare-and-stay-safe/keep-up-healthy-habits/wear-a-face-mask/who-does-not-need-to-wear-a-face-mask/#face-mask-exemptions

Carefirst Westown Urgent Care Services

From the 20th December 2021 our urgent care services for our patients will be reduced.

Our opening hours will be reduced to 9am – 1pm.

Due to covid our urgent care will continue to run a booking system, please call the clinic if you would like to make an appointment.

The Carefirst team apologies for this inconvenience and hope to be back to 9am – 4.30pm service hours as soon as possible.

ZOSTAVAX – Shingles Vaccine

Almost everyone is at risk of shingles because they are likely to have been exposed to chickenpox as some stage in their lives. The Zostavax vaccination prevents shingles and funding for this is changing.

  • From the 31 December 2021 it will only be funded once for patients and in their 65th year.
  • The ministry has funded a catch up programme for anyone over 65 who has not yet received their vaccine.
  • The vaccine is free for anyone  between 65 and 81 years of age until 31 December 2021.
  • Funded vaccines are only available through your GP practice

At Carefirst we are encouraging all patients to book an appointment with one of our nurses to receive a funded Zostavax vaccination before the opportunity expires on the 31 December 2021.

Call your GP practice, Westown, Merrilands or Moturoa medical centre to book an appointment for your vaccine.

COVID-19 BOOSTER VACCINATIONS

Carefirst Westown and Merrilands Medical Centre are offering covid-19 vaccinations for everyone, you don’t have to be one of our registered patients to book a vaccine or visit to receive a vaccine.

You can book online for either clinic or you can walk into our Westown clinic without an appointment

From November 29 we will be offering BOOSTER vaccinations.

Book online at bookmyvaccine.co.nz to make an appointment

Visit www.health.govt.nz/my covid record to find out when your booster is due.

Make an appointment

Learn more about our different appointment types and how to make them.

We're here to help

We care about your health and wellbeing, our goal is to provide excellent primary care services to our patients.

Carefirst Westown

99 Tukapa Street, Westown, New Plymouth (06) 753 9505 email@carefirst.co.nz

Carefirst Merrilands

Merrilands Shopping Centre, Mangorei Road, New Plymouth 4312 (06) 758 8773 email@merrilandsmedical.co.nz

Carefirst Moturoa

486 Saint Aubyn Street, Moturoa, New Plymouth 4310 (06) 751 0390 admin@moturoamedical.co.nz

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