Rural communities around New Zealand will soon have access to overnight GP appointments as Te Whatu Ora rolls a new telehealth primary care service. Ka Ora – the provider contracted to carry out the work – has already partnered with 20 general practices but says it’s working hard to on-board as many as possible before the holiday season. Ka Ora Telecare General manager Jess White says it is important for practices to know that Ka Ora Telehealth won’t take their patients, but supporting practices. Besides overnight support, Ka Ora can take on overflow patients during normal hours and help unenrolled or casual patients. Many Ka Ora staff work day jobs within the public system and do top-up shifts with the service, meaning that workforce can be distributed or shared across the country.
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