Freshwater fish swim their all for science

Source: NIWA – National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research

In a secret training location on the outskirts of Hamilton, a squad of whitebait is being put through its paces by fish scientists.

The tiny inanga have been plucked from Waikato streams and held in a darkened laboratory for the last month, undertaking highly advanced testing to find the strongest, fittest and fastest fish.

NIWA freshwater fish scientists are trying to understand how long they can swim at given speeds – between rests – and how much variation there is between fish of the same species.

This knowledge will enable them to design the perfect stream conditions inside a culvert that will help the fish migrate between the sea and our streams and rivers to complete their life cycle.

Manmade obstacles in waterways are one of the biggest factors in declining native freshwater fish numbers to the point many species are now threatened.

NIWA freshwater ecologist Dr Paul Franklin says getting culvert conditions shipshape is critical. If water flows too fast, fish find it too tough to negotiate.

“We need to find ways to slow the water down or create resting spots. But very little is actually known about how well these fish can swim.

“There is an assumption that inanga are the weakest swimmers of all New Zealand’s freshwater fish but we don’t definitively know that. However, we do expect there will be differences in abilities between the five whitebait species.”

In the lab the fish are tested individually – placed in a specially designed tank where the water speed, temperature and oxygen levels are carefully regulated and the fish training session timed to see how long it takes them before they give up.

Watching their every movement under strict ethical guidelines is university student Dana Nolte. She sits in a neighbouring office watching a live onscreen video feed from the tank, taking note of its behaviour, and how it performs against a strong current.

Some canny subjects spend as much time as they can in a corner of the tank. Dr Franklin thinks this is because the flow is slightly less here, so they’re choosing the spot of least resistance. But figuring out what part of the flume the subject prefers, and how much it’s using the corners is all part of the experiment.

“We’re really trying to learn how we can create conditions the fish prefer or how we can manipulate their behaviour to improve their passage through obstacles like culverts.”

So far, the results have been mixed. Some find it too hard to maintain a position against the current and only last a few seconds. Then there are stayers who have lasted more than an hour before giving up and drifting downstream to the back of the tank. When that happens, Dana turns the current off, and the fish is returned to its holding tank to rest. “We’re finding there’s a lot of natural variation but we’ve also been wondering if the length of time we hold the fish in the lab is impacting on their performance so we’re taking note of that as well,” Dr Franklin says.

At the end of the experiment all fish are returned to the stream they came from.

After the inanga trials, the team will move on to other species to collect as much information as they can – but fish can be tricky.

“We suspect some won’t behave nicely as they’ll be able to stick themselves to the bottom of the tank and not swim at all.”

Ultimately the research will move out of the lab and into streams where the scientists will use their initial information to figure out the future for our freshwater fish in their struggle to survive.

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Proposal to list continence products supplied by Downs Distributors Limited

Source: Pharmac

What we’re proposing

PHARMAC is seeking feedback on a proposal to list a range of continence products in Part III of Section H of the Pharmaceutical Schedule from 1 September 2019, through a listing agreement with Downs Distributors Limited (“Downs”).

Consultation closes at 4pm on Tuesday, 16 April 2019 and feedback can be emailed to denise.mundy@pharmac.govt.nz.

What would the effect be?

From 1 September 2019, Downs’ range of continence products would be listed on the Pharmaceutical Schedule under a national agreement for all DHBs to purchase under, subject to consultation and approval by PHARMAC’s Board or delegate (“Agreement”).

The Agreement would not be for sole supply, with DHBs continuing to be able to purchase other suppliers’ brands of continence products.

The Agreement would supersede any existing DHB contracts with Downs for the continence products included in the Agreement.  Any continence products listed in the Agreement and purchased by the DHB, would be at the price, and the terms and conditions stated in the Agreement, effective from the date of listing on the Pharmaceutical Schedule.

As part of the Agreement, Downs would provide training and education that would be tailored to the needs of the individual DHBs.

Who we think will be interested

  • Suppliers and Wholesalers
  • DHB Staff
    • clinical staff in a range of inpatient, outpatient and community settings where continence products are used or distributed
    • procurement and supply chain personnel

About the continence products

Continence products include a range of devices that are used in hospital and community settings to help manage bowel and bladder control problems, as well as nappies for babies and infants for use while they are in hospital.


Details about our proposal

PHARMAC has entered into a provisional agreement with Downs for a range of continence products.

This proposal would result in listing 295 continence products on the Pharmaceutical Schedule.

The brand ranges included in the Agreement are:

  • Miles
  • Needs Ltd
  • POPY
  • Portex

To provide feedback

Send us an email: denise.mundy@pharmac.govt.nz by 4pm on Tuesday, 16 April 2019.

All feedback received before the closing date will be considered by PHARMAC’s Board (or its delegate) prior to making a decision on this proposal.

Feedback we receive is subject to the Official Information Act 1982 (OIA) and we will consider any request to have information withheld in accordance with our obligations under the OIA. Anyone providing feedback, whether on their own account or on behalf of an organisation, and whether in a personal or professional capacity, should be aware that the content of their feedback and their identity may need to be disclosed in response to an OIA request.

We are not able to treat any part of your feedback as confidential unless you specifically request that we do, and then only to the extent permissible under the OIA and other relevant laws and requirements. If you would like us to withhold any commercially sensitive, confidential proprietary, or personal information included in your submission, please clearly state this in your submission and identify the relevant sections of your submission that you would like it withheld. PHARMAC will give due consideration to any such request.

Last updated: 26 March 2019

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Proposal to list products in the surgical suction, chest and wound drainage; and obstetrics and gynaecology categories supplied by REM Systems Ltd

Source: Pharmac

What we’re proposing

PHARMAC is seeking feedback on a proposal to list a range of surgical suction, chest and wound drainage products and obstetric and gynaecology products in Part III of Section H of the Pharmaceutical Schedule from 1 June 2019 through a provisional Agreement with REM Systems Ltd (“REM”).

Consultation closes at 4pm on Wednesday 10 April 2019 and feedback can be emailed to sarah.penno@pharmac.govt.nz.

What would the effect be?

For DHBs

From 1 June 2019, REMs range of surgical suction, chest and wound drainage products and obstetrics and gynaecology products would fall under a national agreement (“Agreement”) that all DHBs may purchase under. The Agreement provides national consistency for these devices as the terms and conditions, including price, stated in the Agreement and apply to all DHB purchases from the date of listing on the Pharmaceutical Schedule.

The Agreement would not be for sole supply, with DHBs continuing to be able to purchase other suppliers’ brands of surgical suction, chest and wound drainage and obstetrics and gynaecological products.

This Agreement would supersede any existing DHB contracts with this supplier for the devices listed in the Pharmaceutical Schedule.  Any device listed in a PHARMAC Agreement and purchased by a DHB would be at the price and with the terms and conditions stated in the Agreement, effective from the date of listing on the Pharmaceutical Schedule.

PHARMAC estimates that the REM Agreement will result in a small cost increase for DHBs based on current usage of the obstetrics and gynaecology products, while the range of surgical suction, chest and wound drainage products are new for DHBs and may offer savings over other brands.

Who we think will be interested

  • DHB Staff
    • Theatre staff
    • Surgeons – general and specialties
    • Surgical, specialty units, gynaecology and general ward staff
    • Delivery suite staff
    • procurement officers
  • Suppliers and Wholesalers

About the medical devices

Surgical suction, chest and wound drainage products

Surgical interventions of any kind result in tissue damage and blood and other fluid loss. To manage this during the procedure itself, suction equipment is used to remove tissue particles and fluid to ensure the operating field is kept clean and clear.

Post-operatively fluid can accumulate within the wound causing tissue damage, infection, patient discomfort and delayed healing. To prevent this a drain can be inserted to allow fluid to be removed with minimal disruption of the wound site.

A drain is described as any material or equipment used to prevent the formation of a haematoma or to carry fluid or air from inside the body to the surface. Drains can be used with or without previous surgical intervention e.g. chest drains inserted at the bedside or placed in theatre during surgery. Drains can be classified as either open or closed systems.

Irrigation systems can be used to provide a steady flow of a solution across an open wound to provide wound hydration, to remove deep debris and to assist visualisation. It can be applied using a variety of techniques and devices.

Obstetrics and Gynaecology products

This category includes all equipment and consumables used in the obstetric and gynaecology specialities. Products used in delivery suites and by midwives on the wards are included. Gynaecology is the specialty that treats conditions related to female reproductive organs. A small number of devices related to fertility and sterility may be listed as some limited assisted reproduction services are provided by a small number of DHB Hospitals. However most funded services are provided by private clinics are therefore out of scope for PHARMAC.


Why we’re proposing this

In 2018 PHARMAC issued a Requests for Proposals (“RFPs”) for:

The RFP was for non-exclusive national agreements for listing on the Pharmaceutical Schedule.

PHARMAC has been working with suppliers in order to seek provisional agreements and this is the latest surgical suction, chest and wound drainage proposal, and first obstetrics and gynaecology proposal to arise from those processes. We intend to consult on proposed agreements with other suppliers over the next few months.

Details about our proposal

PHARMAC has entered into a provisional Agreement with REM for the supply of a range of surgical suction, chest and wound drainage products and a range of obstetrics and gynaecology products. The product ranges in this proposal have been included in this consultation.

We are making the full list with pricing details available to Procurement Departments at DHBs.

To provide feedback

Send us an email: sarah.penno@pharmac.govt.nz by 4pm, Wednesday 10 April 2019.

All feedback received before the closing date will be considered by PHARMAC’s Board (or its delegate) prior to making a decision on this proposal.

Feedback we receive is subject to the Official Information Act 1982 (OIA) and we will consider any request to have information withheld in accordance with our obligations under the OIA. Anyone providing feedback, whether on their own account or on behalf of an organisation, and whether in a personal or professional capacity, should be aware that the content of their feedback and their identity may need to be disclosed in response to an OIA request.

We are not able to treat any part of your feedback as confidential unless you specifically request that we do, and then only to the extent permissible under the OIA and other relevant laws and requirements. If you would like us to withhold any commercially sensitive, confidential proprietary, or personal information included in your submission, please clearly state this in your submission and identify the relevant sections of your submission that you would like it withheld. PHARMAC will give due consideration to any such request.

Last updated: 25 March 2019

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Antarctica Unfrozen, a podcast series

Source: Antarctica New Zealand

Media release

25.03.2019

A young Cantabrian is hoping to unfreeze Antarctic science mystery with a new podcast series.

Antarctica Unfrozen, created by 21-year-old Blake Antarctic Ambassador Harry Seagar, launches today.

In February he spent 11 days in Antarctica hosted by Antarctica New Zealand.

Seagar says he’s hoping his podcasts will inspire everyday people to have a conversation about the environment.

“I’m just your average Joe who knows a little about Antarctica and cares about climate change, I want to share that with the world and keep a conversation going.”

The podcast has 10 different episodes covering a range of topics from climate change, wildlife and living at Scott Base.

“The episodes are conversation style, I’m asking these amazingly passionate people why they are excited about Antarctica and how we can get others passionate about the environment as well,” he says.

Sir Peter Blake Trust CEO James Gibson says Harry’s podcast project is a new, innovative way of sharing the Blake Antarctic Ambassador experience with all New Zealanders.

“When Sir Peter Blake was on board Seamaster he was using what was then innovative technology to communicate about global environmental issues.  So we’re excited to see Harry using today’s technology to tell stories about the important science work that goes on to help us understand how Antarctica is changing,” he says.

Antarctica New Zealand General Manager of Communications Megan Martin says the podcast will be a great way for New Zealanders to get an insight into Antarctic science.

“Antarctica and the Southern Ocean drive global climate and ocean circulation; what happens there effects the rest of the planet. It’s a fascinating place, but it’s difficult to get to.

“Harry’s podcast will help to take people on a virtual journey to the ice, showing them what we do to support Antarctic science and why it’s important,” she says.

The podcast is available on all major streaming platforms including Spotify and Apple Podcasts now.

ENDS

 

For more information contact

Harry Seagar

harryseagar@gmail.com

021 117 2941

Antarctica New Zealand Communications Advisor

Georgia Nelson

g.nelson@antarcticanz.govt.nz

021 530 769

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NIWA’s Hotspot Watch for 20 March 2019

Source: NIWA – National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research

A weekly update describing soil moisture across the country to help assess whether severely to extremely dry conditions are occurring or imminent.  Regions experiencing these soil moisture deficits are deemed “hotspots”.  Persistent hotspot regions have the potential to develop into drought.

Facts: Soil Moisture

Across the North Island, soil moisture levels generally decreased during the past week due to below normal rainfall amounts. The most significant decreases were observed in eastern Northland and across much of the east coast, with other notable decreases occurring in Bay of Plenty and northern Waikato. The driest soils across the North Island compared to normal for this time of the year are found in eastern Northland, northern Waikato, and Bay of Plenty, while the wettest soils for this time of the year are located near Wellington City.

Hotspots are now located across the majority of Northland, Auckland, northern Waikato, and interior Bay of Plenty, as well as central Manawatu-Whanganui and Napier south to Wairarapa.

In the South Island, soil moisture levels increased significantly across Nelson, Tasman, and Buller District during the past week. Elsewhere, soil moisture generally decreased slightly along the east coast and in Southland, with small increases observed in the West Coast and interior Otago. The driest soils across the South Island compared to normal for this time of the year are now found in lower Southland and Stewart Island, while the wettest soils for this time of the year are found in Marlborough Sounds and a small portion of northern Otago.

South Island hotspots are now located in a portion of interior Marlborough, eastern Banks Peninsula, and the lower Southland coast.

Outlook and Soil Moisture

In the North Island, rainfall amounts over the next several days will be sparse as high pressure remains in control. However, an easterly wind flow will bring a few light showers to eastern-facing locations as well as the Bay of Plenty through the upcoming weekend (23-24 March), although total rainfall amounts will likely remain below 10 mm through to early next week. There is a possibility that a moisture-rich front moving north from the South Island will impact the North Island on Wednesday or Thursday next week (27-28 March), which could bring rainfall amounts of 15-30 mm. However, the passage of this front remains uncertain at this time.  

Should the aforementioned front reach the North Island during the middle of next week, at least minor soil moisture improvements would be expected for most areas, potentially weakening the hotspots currently in place. However, if this front does not eventuate, soil moisture levels would continue to decrease across the North Island.

In the South Island, dry weather is anticipated through to Saturday (23 March). However, early next week moderate to heavy rain will impact the West Coast. The heaviest rain is likely to occur on Tuesday and Wednesday (26-27 March) as an atmospheric river moves across the Tasman Sea from Australia, with rainfall amounts possibly in excess of 300 mm along the western slopes of the Southern Alps. Such heavy rainfall will result in flooding concerns for the West Coast next week. Meanwhile, rainfall amounts from this same event will be far less from Southland to Canterbury, where totals of 25-50 mm will be possible. Northern Canterbury and Marlborough could receive up to 25 mm of rain, with up to 30-40 mm near Nelson.

With the heavy rain expected next week, soils will likely become wetter than normal in the western South Island along with the risk of flooding. Soil moisture levels should improve nearly everywhere else in the South Island as well, shrinking or eliminating the current hotspots.

Soil moisture anomaly (mm) att 9am on 19/3/2019

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Soil moisture anomly (mm) at 9am on 12/03/2019

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New Zealand Drought Index (NZDI) Date: 2019-03-17

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Background:

Hotspot Watch a weekly advisory service for New Zealand media. It provides soil moisture and precipitation measurements around the country to help assess whether extremely dry conditions are imminent. 

Soil moisture deficit:  the amount of water needed to bring the soil moisture content back to field capacity, which is the maximum amount of water the soil can hold.

Soil moisture anomaly:  the difference between the historical normal soil moisture deficit (or surplus) for a given time of year and actual soil moisture deficits.

Definitions: “Extremely” and “severely” dry soils are based on a combination of the current soil moisture status and the difference from normal soil moisture see soil moisture maps.

Hotspot: A hotspot is declared if soils are “severely drier than normal” which occurs when Soil Moisture Deficit (SMD) is less than -110 mm AND the Soil Moisture Anomaly is less than -20 mm.

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Decision to list medical devices in the surgical suction, chest and wound drainage category supplied by Getinge Australia Pty Ltd

Source: Pharmac

Our response to what you told us

We appreciate the time people took to respond to this consultation.

A summary of the main themes raised in feedback and our responses to the feedback received are set out below:

Theme Comment

Feedback that no technical or resource impacts are expected as a result of the proposal.

Noted.

Comment on pricing for one DHB.

Noted.

If you have any questions about this decision, you can email us at enquiry@pharmac.govt.nz; or call our toll free number (9 am to 5 pm, Monday to Friday) on 0800 66 00 50.

Last updated: 20 March 2019

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Almost 50 cases of measles have been confirmed this year.

Source: ESR

Almost 50 cases of measles have been confirmed this year, with almost two thirds of the cases linked to the current outbreak in Canterbury.

ESR, the science agency which tracks all notifiable diseases on behalf of the Ministry of Health, says there have been 49 cases to date this year, with outbreaks also in Waikato and the Bay of Plenty. 

That compares with seven for the same time last year.

Two years ago, New Zealand won international praise for successfully eliminating endemic measles – meaning the virus was no long circulating in New Zealand.

Prior to that, for three years, the only reported measles cases were imported, or spread from someone bringing the virus into the country.

ESR public health physician Jill Sherwood says outbreaks only occur now when someone with the disease arrives here, and it starts to spread.  

“Once here, it can then be easily transmitted if there is a high enough proportion of unimmunised people,” she says.

“That’s why health authorities urge vigilance and stress the need to continue to improve vaccination rates.”

Dr Sherwood says there is always a risk importation of the disease will lead to outbreaks and a return to a situation where measles could become endemic again.

After the introduction of the measles vaccine in 1969, measles continued to occur every year until 1980, with a pattern of “low” years (an average of approximately 100 hospitalisations per year) alternating with “high” or “epidemic” years (an average of 300 hospitalisations per year).

That was because vaccination rates were not high enough to prevent outbreaks.

 Increased uptake of the measles vaccine, which is thought to have reached 70 per cent or more by 1980, resulted in this epidemic cycle becoming more accentuated, with fewer cases and longer periods between epidemics.

Dr Sherwood says measles virtually disappeared between the epidemic years which began to occur less frequently – 1984/85, 1991 and 1997. There were 400 hospitalisations in the 1984/85 outbreak, and a total of 943 hospitalisations in the 1991 and 1997 epidemics, with seven deaths in 1991.  No deaths occurred in 1997.

She says as vaccination coverage increased, outbreaks have been generally confined to a particular region and have been of shorter duration that the epidemics of the past.

“An outbreak in 2009 was probably stopped and an epidemic prevented by the enhanced immunisation programme that was implemented.”

Dr Sherwood says large-scale measles epidemics occur when the proportion of the population who are non-immune increases, usually because the immunisation coverage is low.

“It’s been estimated that to prevent recurrent outbreaks of measles, 95 per cent of the population must be immune,” she says.

 Measles is considered to be the most common vaccine-preventable cause of death among children throughout the world.

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Proposal to amend or list medical devices supplied by Boucher & Muir (NZ) Ltd

Source: Pharmac

What we’re proposing

PHARMAC is seeking feedback on a proposal to amend current listings and extend the range of insulin pen needles supplied by Boucher & Muir (NZ) Ltd (“Boucher & Muir”), through a non-exclusive provisional agreement.

It is proposed that:

  • from 1 June 2019 Boucher & Muir’s brand of insulin pen needle would be available to DHBs at a reduced price; and
  • from 1 June 2019 four additional sizes of insulin pen needles supplied by Boucher & Muir would be listed in Part III of Section H of the Pharmaceutical Schedule. 

Consultation closes at 4pm on Thursday, 4 April 2019 and feedback can be emailed to chloe.dimock@pharmac.govt.nz.

What would the effect be?

For Community Patients, Pharmacies and Prescribers

There would be no change to the funded access of subsidised insulin pen needle products available. However, the price and subsidy of the insulin pen needle product supplied by Boucher & Muir (currently listed as ABM) would be reduced from 1 June 2019. The insulin pen needle product would remain fully subsidised.

For DHBs supplying medical devices either in hospitals or in the community

From 1 June 2019, Boucher & Muir’s range of insulin pen needle products would be amended & extended under the proposed national agreement for all DHBs to purchase under, subject to consultation and approval by PHARMAC’s Board or delegate (“Agreement”).

This Agreement would not be for sole supply, with DHBs continuing to be able to purchase other suppliers’ brands of insulin pen needle. The Agreement includes additional insulin pen needles sizes new to DHB Hospitals & their funded services and would provide a greater range of products for clinical staff to choose from.

The Agreement would supersede any existing DHB contracts with Boucher & Muir for the devices included in the Agreement. Any medical device listed in the Agreement and purchased by a DHB would be at the price, terms and conditions stated in the Agreement, effective from the date of listing on the Pharmaceutical Schedule.

Pricing for the devices in the Agreement, subject to any prior termination of the Agreement, would not be increased without prior consultation and approval by PHARMAC.

Who we think will be interested

  • Suppliers and Wholesalers;
  • DHB procurement & supply chain personnel;
  • Pharmacists (community and hospital.)
  • Patients who use insulin pen needles;
  • Health care professionals who support people who use insulin pen needles.

About needles and syringes – insulin pen needles

Needles and syringes

Needles and syringes are medical devices predominantly used to inject fluids (such as medicines) into or withdraw fluids from the body (such as blood). Syringes are also used for a variety of other purposes such as for flushing, irrigating and are also used with medical gases and air. These medical devices are used across a wide range of clinical settings.

Insulin pen needles are single use, sterile, medical devices designed to be used in conjunction with pen injectors for subcutaneous injection of diabetes medication.


Why we’re proposing this

In 2017 PHARMAC issued a Request for Proposals (“RFP”) for needles and syringes.

The RFP was for non-exclusive national agreements for listing in the Pharmaceutical Schedule.

PHARMAC has been working with suppliers to seek provisional agreements and this proposal is the latest to arise from this process. We expect to consult on further proposed agreements in this category over the coming months.

Details about our proposal

PHARMAC has entered into a provisional Agreement with Boucher & Muir for a range of insulin pen needle products. Pricing has been made available to appropriate DHB personnel.

The proposal would result in the following Pharmaceutical Schedule changes: 

Brand Name

Product Type-Presentation

Proposed Change

Section B of the Pharmaceutical Schedule

Berpu*

Insulin Pen Needles – 31 G x 6 mm

Price & Brand Name Amendment

Part III of Section H of the Pharmaceutical Schedule

Berpu

Insulin Pen Needles – 29 G x 12.7 mm

New Listing

Berpu

Insulin Pen Needles – 31 G x 5 mm

New Listing

Berpu*

Insulin Pen Needles – 31 G x 6 mm

Price & Brand Name Amendment

Berpu

Insulin Pen Needles – 31 G x 8 mm

New Listing

Berpu

Insulin Pen Needles – 32 G x 4 mm

New Listing

*  Please note this product is currently listed in the Pharmaceutical Schedule under the brand name ‘ABM’- The product has not changed but the brand name would be changed to Berpu in the Pharmaceutical Schedule from 1 June 2019

To provide feedback

Send us an email: chloe.dimock@pharmac.govt.nz by 4 pm 4 April 2019.

All feedback received before the closing date will be considered by PHARMAC’s Board (or its delegate) prior to making a decision on this proposal.

Feedback we receive is subject to the Official Information Act 1982 (OIA) and we will consider any request to have information withheld in accordance with our obligations under the OIA. Anyone providing feedback, whether on their own account or on behalf of an organisation, and whether in a personal or professional capacity, should be aware that the content of their feedback and their identity may need to be disclosed in response to an OIA request.

We are not able to treat any part of your feedback as confidential unless you specifically request that we do, and then only to the extent permissible under the OIA and other relevant laws and requirements. If you would like us to withhold any commercially sensitive, confidential proprietary, or personal information included in your submission, please clearly state this in your submission and identify the relevant sections of your submission that you would like it withheld. PHARMAC will give due consideration to any such request.

Last updated: 14 March 2019

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Proposal to list interventional radiology products supplied by Stryker New Zealand Limited

Source: Pharmac

What we’re proposing

PHARMAC is seeking feedback on a proposal to list a range of medical devices in the interventional radiology consumable products category in Part III of Section H of the Pharmaceutical Schedule from 1 May 2019, though a listing agreement with Stryker New Zealand Limited (“Stryker”).

Consultation closes at 4pm on Thursday, 4 April 2019 and feedback can be emailed to procurement@pharmac.govt.nz.

What would the effect be?

For DHBs

From 1 May 2019, Stryker’s range of medical devices in the interventional radiology products category would be listed under a national agreement for all DHBs to purchase under, subject to consultation and approval by PHARMAC’s Board or delegate (“Agreement”).

The Agreement would not be for sole supply, with DHBs continuing to be able to purchase other suppliers’ brands of interventional radiology products.

The Agreement would supersede any existing DHB contracts with Stryker for the range of medical devices included in the Agreement.  Any medical devices listed in the Agreement and purchased by a DHB would be at the price, and the terms and conditions stated in the Agreement, effective from the date of listing on the Pharmaceutical Schedule.

As part of the Agreement, Stryker would provide training and education, as applicable, that would be tailored to the needs of the individual DHBs.

Who we think will be interested

  • DHB Staff
    • Procurement and supply chain personnel
    • Interventional radiology staff
  • Suppliers and Wholesalers

About interventional radiology products

Interventional radiology refers to a range of minimally invasive alternatives to surgery to diagnose and treat a variety of conditions in nearly every organ system, that are performed using radiologic imaging guidance to precisely target the intervention. The procedures are performed using catheters inserted via either radial or femoral arteries or veins.

The imaging modalities used include general radiography including fluoroscopy, angiography, ultrasound, computed tomography, and magnetic resonance imaging.

Interventional radiology in some form is performed in all hospitals across New Zealand.


Details about our proposal

PHARMAC has entered into a provisional Agreement with Stryker for 325 interventional radiology products – these include catheters, guidewires, introducer sheaths, retrievers and vascular flow devices. The exact product range and pricing in this proposal has not been included in this consultation for brevity.

We are making the full list available to Procurement Departments at DHBs.

To provide feedback

Send us an email: procurement@pharmac.govt.nz by 4 April 2019.

All feedback received before the closing date will be considered by PHARMAC’s Board (or its delegate) prior to making a decision on this proposal.

Feedback we receive is subject to the Official Information Act 1982 (OIA) and we will consider any request to have information withheld in accordance with our obligations under the OIA. Anyone providing feedback, whether on their own account or on behalf of an organisation, and whether in a personal or professional capacity, should be aware that the content of their feedback and their identity may need to be disclosed in response to an OIA request.

We are not able to treat any part of your feedback as confidential unless you specifically request that we do, and then only to the extent permissible under the OIA and other relevant laws and requirements. If you would like us to withhold any commercially sensitive, confidential proprietary, or personal information included in your submission, please clearly state this in your submission and identify the relevant sections of your submission that you would like it withheld. PHARMAC will give due consideration to any such request.

Last updated: 13 March 2019

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Congratulations Professor Renwick

Source: Antarctica New Zealand

Antarctica New Zealand congratulates Professor James Renwick who has been awarded the prestigious Prime Minister’s Science Communication Prize.

The Victoria University Professor is the Principal Investigator on one of the core Antarctica Science Platform projects, Sea Ice and Carbon Cycle Feedbacks.

A highly respected climate scientist and communicator, he also contributes to the work of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

The selection panel says it was impressed with the way Professor Renwick walks the talk and communicates with warmth, humour and positivity, while remaining clear about the seriousness of the issue.

Antarctica New Zealand Chief Scientific Advisor Dr Fiona Shanhun says this is an outstanding achievement.

“We are delighted to see James’ hard work and dedication to raising the importance of the impact of climate change, and what it means for New Zealanders, recognised,” she says.

Read more here 

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