The below programme is current as at 26 January and subject to change.

The NZRGPN National Rural Health Conference 2018 has been endorsed by The Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners (RNZCGP) and has been approved for up to 20.5 CME credits for the General Practice Educational Programme (GPEP) and Continuing Professional Development (CPD) purposes.

Click here to view speaker biographies and abstracts for all concurrent presentations


Preconference day

8.00am - 5.30pm  Registration desk open
Princes ballroom foyer
7.00pm  Doctors' and nurses' dinner
Vivace Restaurant


8.30am - 5.00pm

Rural Hospital Medicines update, AGM and Registrar Training Day 
Princes Ballroom A
Download the programme here
9.30am - 12.00pm

RHAANZ board meeting
Gallery room three

4.00pm - 5.00pm 

Te Roopu Arahi Hui
Gallery room three

5.00pm - 7.00pm NZRGPN board meeting
Gallery room three


10.00am - 5.00pm Rural Research Day – RNZCGP rural GP chapter

The "Rural Research Day" has been endorsed by The Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners (RNZCGP) and has been approved for up to 5.67 CME credits for the General Practice Educational Programme (GPEP) and Continuing Professional Development (CPD) purposes.

Please click here to download the programme

We are excited to announce that there will be a $500 prize for the best registrar presentation and two $250 prizes for runners up.

To take a look at the speakers presentations last year, and earn yourselves some CME points click here.

Cost: $25 for students and registrars, $85 for everyone else, includes catering

Location: Princes Ballroom C

10.00am - 12.00pm Bayer Contraception workshop
Facilitated by Dr Orna McGinn 

Orna is a UK trained GP with qualifications in Sexual and Reproductive Health and Obstetrics and Gynaecology. She works part time as a GP in East Auckland and also teaches on the Diploma of Obstetrics and Gynaecology at the University of Auckland.

New Zealand currently has the highest rate of teenage pregnancy in the OECD, having overtaken the USA in recent years. Despite this, no formal training exists in this country to equip practitioners with the skills they need to discuss and provide the most effective contraception to their patients, LARC (long acting reversible contraception).

In this workshop we will discuss the current barriers to accessing contraception in New Zealand, and the advantages of LARC . Model arms and pelvises will be provided and each participant will be shown insertion and removal techniques for Jadelle, Mirena and the copper IUD. 

Before attending the workshop it is expected that each participant will have completed the Goodfellow Unit learning modules on Jadelle and IUCD as background reading.

Cost: $30, includes morning tea
Location: Princes Ballroom B

10.00am - 12.30pm  Understanding the biomechanics and physical demands of one of the toughest rural industries – shearing 
Facilitated by Laura Hancock, Rural Works

Sheep farming has been crucial in the development of the New Zealand economy.

Previous studies have focused on the ergonomics and physical demands of shearing and confirm that it is one of the most physically demanding occupations in the world today (Culvenor et al., 1997; Harvey et al., 2002; Stuart et al).  The muscular endurance and stamina needed for a full eight or nine hour day shearing in a woolshed is quite astounding, with continuous muscular and neural strain put upon the body in potentially stressful biomechanical positions.

This informative 2.5 hour workshop is one of a kind, with an emphasis on upskilling rural health professionals to better help their patients involved with tough physical rural industries.  Attendees are encouraged to explore and experience the movement concepts during the workshop.

Photographic and video footage is used to break down the shearing process into individual blows to discuss the impact upon the body, both to the muscular and the neural system, of the varying positions and movements undertaken by shearers.  

Understanding of movement patterns and subsequent strain upon the body helps guide practitioners to be able to educate and advise shearers on how they may manage to maintain and improve the condition of the soft tissues of the body, prevent injuries, maintain mobility and range of motion and improve posture, as well as helping communication and connection with patients who work within the shearing industry.

Cost: $30, includes morning tea
Location: Gallery room one

2.00pm - 4.00pm  Te Ao Maori and why protocols exist
Facilitated by Hemaima Tait  

Health inequities are a 'difference in health that are unnecessary, avoidable, unfair and unjust and amenable to policy change / intervention.' Maori experience the worst health outcomes of Northland's population and these are in effect a result of the health inequities in our system. 

Learn about how to work implementation and change in system support and how to work positively with those impacted by health inequities. 

Cost: $30, includes afternoon tea
Location: Gallery room one

2.00pm - 4.00pm FujiFilm Sonosite ultrasound training and support workshop 

Details to come
Cost: $30, includes afternoon tea
Location: Princes Ballroom B
This workshop is now full

2.00pm - 4.00pm Nurses Skills workshop
Advanced rural nursing-staying safe amidst the challenges
followed by
Standing Orders: Staying safe as rural nurses- Back to Basics for practice and PRIME
Kate Stark, Nurse Practitioner Gore Health and various other areas in the lower South Island

'Revision of ECG Interpretation'
Tracey Reid, Clinical Nurse Educator at Dunstan Hospital

'Point of Care Testing' – What you need to know 
Catherine Beazeley, Nurse Practitioner, Hokianga Health

Cost: $30, includes afternoon tea
Location: Gallery room two

4.00pm - 9.00pm Safe Hands, Safe Plans
Closed workshop for Grassroots students only. 
Location: Gallery room two


Day one

7.30am - 5.30pm Registration desk open
8.30am - 9.15am  Mihi whakatau and official conference opening 
Princes ballroom C
9.15am - 10.00am  The end of modern medicine? 
Siouxsie Wiles 
10.00am - 10.45am Morning tea and poster session
10.45am - 11.10am Minister of Health address
Dr David Clark
  Princes ballroom A Princes ballroom B Princes ballroom C Gallery one Gallery two Gallery three
11.15am - 11.55am  New Rural Interprofessional Simulation Course (RiSC)
Sampsa Kiuru,Steve Withington and Tracey Reid,
Rural Health Academic Centre, Ashburton
Nursing on thin ice
Rachel Beech,
Northland DHB
Evidence-based natural health - what works, what doesn't & how to tell the difference
Shaun Holt 
Planning for your financial success
Sue Stewart and Hamish McPhail,
Health Care for People with Intellectual Disability
Carolyn Stobbs and Elizabeth Waring,

The impact on the Hokianga Health service of the Rural Hospital Medicine vocational scope
Katharina Blattner, 
Hokianga Health Enterprises Trust and University of Otago

12.00pm - 12.40pm  New Zealand Defence Force emergency and disaster medicine
Mike O'Reilly
Rural Nurses NZ
Rhonda Johnson
A community based intervention for rural Maori at risk of lung cancer
Ross Lawrenson,
University of Waikato
"O matou whakaaro"" What wahine Maori (Maori women) think about smoking and trying to quit
Lynne Russell,
Health Promotion Agency
Subconscious Prejudice - a photographic perspective
Chris Reid,
Kerikeri Medical Centre
Rural Practice and the HDC - Are rural GPs treated differently? 
Tim Cookson, MPS
12.40pm - 1.45pm Lunch
  Princes ballroom A Princes ballroom B 
Princes ballroom C
Gallery one
Gallery two
Gallery three
1.45pm - 2.25pm Supporting rural New Zealanders to access innovative e-health services
Andrew Slater, 
Homecare Medical

Rural Nursing: Engaging with Benefits and Challenges of the Rural Setting for Sustainable Workforce Development 
Kathryn McAuley,
University of Otago
Are antidepressants effective in primary care?
Bruce Arroll,
University of Auckland
MEDTECH Technology update
Sanjeewa Samaraweera
Improvement science in action: Joining up teams to join-up care in Nelson
Jane Cullen and Rachel Mackie,
Health Quality & Safety Commission
Maternity and Early Childhood Care in Rural New Zealand 
Rachael Dean,
Rural Women New Zealand
2.30pm - 3.10pm A Spoonful of Sugar to Make the Medicine Go Down?: Psychological Factors in Adherence
Leigh Anderson,
NZ College of Clinical Psychologists 

Conceptualising 'place' and its relationship with health care professionals' 
Jean Ross,
Otago Polytechnic
The BROAD study: A community based whole food plant-based RCT for obesity, IHD or diabetes
Patrick McHugh,
University of Otago
Continuing on the Journey: Taking Advance Care Planning into Rural Communities
Karlynne Earp and Arthur Te Anini,
Hauraki PHO
Patient Experience to Quality Improvement
Catherine Gerard,
Health Quality & Safety Commission
Farmstrong - Live Well, Farm Well
Gerard Vaughan,
Mental Health Foundation and FMG

3.10pm - 3.45pm Afternoon tea
3.45pm - 4.30pm Maori child and infant health
Professor David Tipene-Leach
4.30pm - 5.15pm A World of its Own - Great Barrier Island
Adele Robertson and  Leonie Howie,
Aotea Health
5.15pm - 6.30pm Welcome function amongst the exhibition
Kindly sponsored by My Life Health Services
7.00pm onwards Student drinks
Fort Street Union
7.00pm - 11.00pm  Pat Farry Trust Fundraiser Dinner
Hosted by the Pat Farry Trust at Gemmayze St

Day two

7.30am - 5.15pm Registration desk open
7.30am - 8.45am  ManageMyHealth breakfast session
Increasing access to Healthcare in Rural Settings via Video Consultations
Sanjeewa Samaraweera
Breakfast served from 7.00am
Gallery two
Who'd want to be a rural GP? 
Ideas from our experiences in Ontario with NOSM
John and Sue Burton
Breakfast served from 7.00am
Gallery three
9.00am - 9.45am Addressing health inequity through community, practice, person and self
Kyle Eggleton
University of Auckland
9.45am - 10.30am Rural and remote health research collaboration in Australia
Prof John Wakerman
Flinders University
John appears with support from South Link Education Trust
10.30am - 11.00am Morning tea
  Princes ballroom A Princes ballroom B Princes ballroom C Gallery one Gallery two Gallery three
11.00am - 11.40am Rewinding the biological clock? Today's reality
Olivia Stuart, 
Fertility Associates
 A rural elective: My experiences of Tonga and Tanzania
Jordan Gibbs,
University of Otago/ Pat Farry Trust 

The Doctor Nurse Game. Have we got it right or are we playing charades?
Chelsea Willmott, Dunedin School of Nursing, Empowering Education
Inter- professional double session - 
Part one
Health professional students in rural New Zealand - lessons learned
Christine Wilson and Sue Pullon
University of Otago

An indigenous model of health as a framework for interprofessional education
Patrick McHugh, University of Otago
Sanofi diabetes workshop part one:
Breaking down the barriers to starting insulin: addressing clinical inertia and patient inertia
Dr David Kim and Rab Burtun, Waitemata DHB
A qualitative study of how regional hospital networks can support rural health care quality
Carol Atmore,
University of Otago

11.45am - 12.25pm PHARMAC and medication funding: how difficult can it be?
Bryan Betty,
Collaborating for Rural Health: Auckland University Grassroots students Visit South Waikato
Gytha Lancaster,
Hauraki PHO and
Benjamin Alsop-ten Hove, Medical student at Auckland University
Blood cancer in the Community
Brian Grainger,
Leukaemia & Blood Cancer New Zealand
Part two
Wairoa- Interprofessional education in rural New Zealand
Patrick McHugh, University of Otago 

Listening to the student voice: Student evaluations of the Rural Health Interprofessional Programme EBOP
Yvonne Boyes and Matt Sinton,

Sanofi diabetes workshop part two: Starting insulin in primary care
Dr David Kim and Rab Burtun, Waitemata DHB
Integration of point-of-care testing in rural health: Now and beyond
Geoff Herd, Katharina Blattner & Cathy Beazley
Northland District Health Board
12.25pm - 1.30pm Lunch amongst the exhibition

Gallery three

Rural Health Developments within the University of Otago
Opportunity to hear about, and provide feedback on, developments in Rural Health at the University
Garry Nixon, Associate Dean Rural, Division of Health Sciences, University of Otago
Gallery two
1.30pm - 2.15pm AMR and One Health: animals' role in human and environmental health
Mark Bryan

  Princes ballroom A Princes ballroom B
Princes ballroom C
Gallery one Gallery two Gallery three
2.20pm - 3.00pm MAPping New Zealand: Implementing community based, evidence informed, multidisciplinary care for people with musculoskeletal conditions
Peter Jones,
Ministry of Health
Advocacy and you - practical tips on how to create change
Elizabeth Berryman
CVD Guidelines - What does this mean for your clinical practice?
Fraser Hamilton,
Heart Foundation
Creating an inclusive society
Anne Hawker,
Ministry of Social Developement
Storytelling: Revealing rural nurses' practice which has evolved and their contribution to rural health care
Jean Ross and Josie Crawley,
Otago Polytechnic
The qualities of a good rural hospital. A NZ 2017 perspective
Rory Miller,
University of Otago 
3.00pm - 3.30pm Afternoon tea
3.30pm - 4.15pm Rural health workforce
With rural health professionals increasingly thin on the ground, it's important we all understand proposals to start to turn this situation around. Currently the Ministry of Health and the Tertiary Education Commission are considering two proposals: one from Waikato University for a Rural Medical School and a joint proposal from Auckland and Otago Universities for a national network of Rural Health Schools. Given the significance of these two proposals, representatives from each proposal will participate in a facilitated conversation to outline their proposal and the impact it could have on rural health in New Zealand.
4.15pm - 5.00pm PRIME Panel discussion
What's been achieved one year on and where to next?
Facilitated by Dr Tim Malloy, Chair of the National PRIME Committee
Kate Stark, PRIME practitioner and rural Nurse Practitioner
Buzz Burrell, PRIME provider/practitioner and rural GP
Daniel Ohs, Assistant Director of Operations, St John

5.00pm - 5.15pm Conference close
Princes ballroom C
7.00pm - late Medtech Conference Awards Dinner
Princes Ballroom, Pullman Auckland

Post conference breakfast forums

9.00am - 12.00pm  Network members breakfast forum
Gallery rooms 1 & 2

10.00am - 12.00pm  Student breakfast forum
Gallery room 3


Our breakfast forums are a catered event and space is limited. In fairness for others, please only register for a breakfast if you plan to attend and organise your travel accordingly. If you register for a breakfast or any other function session and can no longer attend please let Emma ( know so your place can be offered to another delegate. 


Breakfast session, Conference dinner, Medtech Solution lounge  

Conference app and student registrations

Satchel and workshop 
Welcome reception 
 Catering sponsors