Jeanette Wedding Rural Hospitals manager, Debbie Evans KCHT CEO, Garry Mitchell overall winner of 2019’s Quality Awards and facilities manager for the Timatanga Hou Detox redevelopment project, Jen Thomas Dargaville Hospital operations manager

Dargaville Hospital living its values

by Andy Bryenton

The biannual Dargaville Hospital Quality Awards organised by the Northland District Health Board staff in Dargaville aim to acknowledge staff who create, test and implement innovation.

The awards are a way to highlight and celebrate changes that have improved our healthcare locally. These actions help ensure our little hospital on the hill provides a high level of professional healthcare for our community.

The awards ceremony was held at the Dargaville hospital on May 14, providing a chance to celebrate innovative projects that lead to quality improvement in our local health system. Jen Thomas, hospital operations manager both here and in the Bay of Islands, put it best.

“You all go above and beyond,” she told staff and award recipients, “It often goes unrecognised, as there’s a whole heap of other things you do aside from what people see as your regular jobs. We’d like to celebrate the pride you take in your work. It’s really appreciated what you do; nothing less than your best every day.”

The winner of this year’s supreme award was presented to Dargaville Hospital site maintenance controller Garry Mitchell, who was praised for his project management minimising disruption to day to day services whilst redeveloping the Detox Unit within the existing footprint. While he says he’s proud to win top honours, it was a team effort, involving the efforts of many local tradespeople as well as hospital staff.

“It’s great to get recognition,” says Garry, “it wouldn’t have been possible without the others on the team who helped out.”

The overall winner’s award was presented in partnership with the Kaipara Community Health Trust, who hold ownership of 46 per cent of the hospital for the community, and the NDHB, the authority delivering healthcare to our region.

Aside from this significant award, champions in more than 20 different areas of healthcare were lauded, along with award winners in categories such as mental health, clinical practice, clinical support, patient safety and care for colleagues. It’s all about congratulating and reinforcing a team who give so much to keep their fellow citizens healthy and active.