Waitakere Health Link bring local communities of interest together within the health sector. We work closely with local health and social service providers to connect the services in the west with consumers, share health information with the community and collect feedback to inform service planning. The current initiatives are:
Community Public Forums and Consultations
Waitakere Health Link provide a unique opportunity for local community and health and social service providers to attend forums to learn about health services available and those being planned for the west and to obtain feedback and identify gaps for consumers.
Health Consumer Representation
A Health Consumer Representative is a consumer who has taken up a specific role to provide advice. Waitakere Health Link source Health Consumer Representatives to participate as a consumer member of a committee, project or event who voices consumer perspectives and takes part in decision making on behalf of consumers.
A health consumer representative may be nominated by and accountable to, a consumer organisation.
Usually the role is working with a health service (or consumer organisation) and is often in a volunteer capacity. Sometimes the role comes with a small payment to cover the consumer’s costs.
Consumer Health Literacy Review
Waitakere Health Link facilitate consumer health literacy review of patient information. “52% of adult New Zealanders have low literacy. People with poor health literacy are less likely to use prevention services, are less likely to manage their long term condition and have less knowledge of their illness, treatment and medicines”. (Ministry of Health 2006).
Consumers review patient information to ensure the content uses clear simple language, removes health jargon and promotes the use of colour, diagrams and photos where appropriate. Keeping information simple helps families understand health information and services needed to make appropriate health decisions for their well being.
Waitakere Hospital Community Services Open Day
Bridging the information gap between hospital services and services provided in the community, Waitakere Health Link continues to host two Community Services Open Days to enable hospital staff to increase their knowledge of local health services available to patients in the community. Hospital staff can share this knowledge with patients and their families when they leave hospital, so families feel supported to access health services in the community.
Sharing Information across the Community
We provide targeted information in a variety of mediums for easy access to community.
The community is better informed about the health services available to them. Waitakere Health Link also attend local community meetings to share health information and obtain feedback directly from the community on local health issues. This community feedback helps us identify systemic gaps that impact on the patient journey accessing services in primary and secondary care.
Babies Out West Brochure
The Babies Out West brochure provides information about services from pregnancy and childbirth to counselling and parenting education available in West Auckland.
Brochures are distributed through Waitakere Hospital maternity, midwives, and Plunket, and also available at all health and social service organisations in the west and CABs, Libraries, GPs, kindergartens, day cares etc.