Transition to Health NZ

Do you have questions regarding the transition to Health NZ?

On 1 July 2022 Health NZ (HNZ) and the Māori Health Authority (MHA) will become legal entities and all the DHBs will be disestablished. The Pae Ora legislation that creates what will be the most substantial and significant change to our health system in decades, has passed through its Select Committee stage and is now set to become law. If you wish to read this legislation it can be found here.

For those who don’t (understandably) want to read the legislation, NZRDA will be providing key things you need to know over the upcoming weeks through to July 1 in brief emails and accompanying videos for your information. We still don’t know everything about how the new entities will function, but as light is shed on what our future looks like, we will keep you informed.

Health NZ Newsletter #1

  1. HNZ will be the single employer for all employees currently employed by DHBs. That means that all RMOs currently in DHB employment will automatically (by virtue of the legislation) become HNZ employees on 1 July 2022. You don’t need to do anything – this will simply happen courtesy of the legislation.
  2. For those of you on the move at our July changeover: you will not be changing employers – you will simply be transferring to another work location with the same (single) employer (HNZ). The DHBs do seem to be having some difficulty “letting go” and we understand are still requesting RMOs resign their employment in July and recommence employment with the new DHB a day later.  We have communicated with the DHBs about this, however….! You will still have to do paperwork around payroll, security, passwords, etc as the DHB infrastructure will not have changed – so we will still have separate payrolls for a while at least, however, your employment is not terminating and being commenced anew. If you are asked to resign, just get in touch, do not resign.
  3. The CE of HNZ is Margie Apia, previously CE of CMDHB. The CE of MHA is Riana Manuel (Ngāti Pukenga, Ngāti Maru, Ngāti Kahungunu), previously CE of Hauraki Primary Health Organisation and Te Korowai Hauora o Hauraki. The second tier of the HNZ management structure is to be announced shortly.
  4. We do know however that HNZ will have a 4-regional structure, each with a CE however they will NOT be employers rather responsible for delivering on local service imperatives.
  5. NZRDA supports a single RMO service within HNZ (see paper here) which has been warmly received by HNZ.
  6. A new National Public Health Unit will be established under the Ministry of Health. Discussions are underway between this unit and NZRDA with respect to public health registrars, their employment, and training.

More to follow….

Health NZ Newsletter #2

This is the second update as we move towards HNZ becoming real on 1 July. There has been a flurry of work around RMOs in the past few weeks and how we are “managed” with a little bit of right hand not knowing what the left hand is doing. So for instance we have the workforce task force asking one group of people to look at the operating model for RMO Units and another from People and Culture looking to what we need to do day 1 and thereafter – of which there is some overlap! We are trying to reduce duplication and worse still different outcomes from this work however whilst we do that, one thing you do need to be aware of is an impending survey.

HNZ is going to do 2 surveys seeking people’s views on priorities and expectations under the new structure: 1 of all stakeholders and the second of RMOs. You are getting a slightly different survey because whilst you are a stakeholder, this is about your lives, and you have real “skin in the game”; other roles are more in support and to facilitate. One of the questions you will be asked is what your expectations of HNZ will be and what you think theirs will be of you? We did a trial run of this last week at delegates’ training and attached is what they produced to start you thinking about this. Other questions are about what areas of our lives need priority attention! The survey will be launched in a couple of weeks and will probably come out through NZRDA given HNZ doesn’t yet have an office or a database from which to connect with you all. Please watch this space for that and have a think about what you want to say.

A second area being discussed is what operating model the RMO Units should take. We have suggested this is putting the cart a little before the horse: let’s decide first what we want and then sort out the structure to support that. We have made it very clear to all concerned that anything that operates like the NRA will not be supported by you. On a more positive note, hopefully we will get a model that supports your work and training and sees you as a person rather than a number on a roster. And hopefully we can make the Units a better place to work so we retain the good staff who do this important work.

And remember, on 1 July 2022, nothing will suddenly change for you except you no longer need to resign when moving between what were DHBs. You will still get paid, run reviews will continue uninterrupted, RMO Units will still be there and doing what they do, and your training will continue…. Things will start to change later in the year, but you will have plenty of warning around this and we will be involved in whatever is being decided.

NZRDA is in regular contact with HNZ, so if you have any questions, including if you hear any disturbing rumours (!), please get hold of us.

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