27 Mar 2009

Comments on Waikato nurse numbers draw fire

7:13 am on 27 March 2009

Comments from a Waikato Hospital manager that it has too many nurses are being dismissed as naive and clumsy.

In his report to the Health Waikato Advisory Committee, Dr Grant Howard says the hospital spent $3 million more on staff than it planned to last month.

Dr Howard says the hospital is not considering redundancy or staff reduction, but wants to improve how nurses and other staff are allocated across shifts and departments.

The chief executive of the New Zealand Nursing Organisation, Geoff Annals, says Dr Howard's comments are naive.

The acting chair of the Waikato District Health Board says she has full confidence in the management of Waikato Hospital. Sally Christie says the hospital was over budget by a considerable amount last month. She also says the corresponding workload has not increased.