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Plunket welcomes lower infant mortality rates

Plunket welcomes the latest statistics showing a continued fall in New Zealand’s infant mortality rates, including for Māori infants. Plunket Chief Executive Amanda Malu says it is the long-term trend in the statistics, which show New Zealand’s infant mortality rate was down to 3. 8 deaths per 1000 live births in 2018 compared with 5.

Plunket partners with Watercare

Plunket New Zealand has partnered with Watercare in Auckland and Wellington Water to help families and whānau understand how they can protect their health and the local environment by being mindful of what they pour down the sink and flush down the toilet. Plunket’s Northern Region Operations Manager Sam Ferreira says the partnerships provide a meaningful opportunity to leverage resources throughout our main regions to benefit families and the community. “A lot of families are unaware of fatbergs, which are congealed masses of fat, grease, wet wipes and other non-flushable items.

Plunket re-opens Manurewa centre - Poutokomanawa

After a significant make-over, Plunket’s Manurewa Family Centre re-opens today to provide a welcoming, warm space for local families and whānau. Renamed Poutokomanawa, the centre aims to provide a safe place where whānau can relax and meet other parents, attend Plunket clinics and ask questions about the health or wellbeing of their family. About 60 people attended the re-opening, including Plunket Chief Executive Amanda Malu.

Plunket welcomes ban on smoking with kids in cars

Plunket welcomes the announcement that the Government will be banning smoking in vehicles carrying children under 18 years of age, but says it will require the support of communities to help parents and caregivers to give up smoking. Jane O’Malley, Plunket’s Chief Nurse, said the evidence is overwhelming that exposure to second-hand smoke is a major risk to children’s health. “Ongoing education programmes and increased support services are key to effecting long-lasting change.

Helping keep kids happy and hydrated in the heatwave

New Zealand is in a heatwave! This tropical weather can be really nice (bring on the beach), but it also comes with some hazards that we might not be used to dealing with - especially around our little people. In hot weather, babies and young children can rapidly lose body fluids through sweating - much more so than adults. This fluid loss can lead to dehydration, which is especially dangerous for small children.

Karori crèche to remain open

Operations of the Karori Plunket Crèche will be transferred to the Karori community in the new year, following successful negotiations between Plunket and crèche parents.  
The negotiations began in response to the Karori Under Fives community consultation held in June and July this year, when almost 450 people provided feedback to Plunket about the priority needs of young Karori families. Spokesperson for the Karori Crèche parents, Rachael Bowie, said, "We are thrilled our much-loved and needed community crèche will remain open.

Plunket Volunteer recognised for her passion supporting families

Seven and a half years ago Kaye Connor and her family welcomed their first baby into the world. It wasn’t long before she found herself volunteering for Plunket. This month, Kaye was awarded Plunket Volunteer of the Year for the Auckland region at a function supported by BestStart, Plunket’s Star Partner.

Wahakura Project Empowers Māori Whānau

The first participants in a programme helping to educate and support Māori whānau to provide safe sleeping spaces for their new babies will celebrate their success on Sunday 25 November. The Whānau Ora – Raranga Wahakura Pilot Project was developed by Papakura Plunket Nurse Donna Fane to help reduce SUDI (Sudden Unexpected Death in Infancy) rates among Māori. “The Counties Manukau area has the highest SUDI rate within New Zealand.

Support for breastfeeding mothers goes digital

Plunket has launched a new digital service to help mothers needing extra support with breastfeeding their babies, thanks to a significant donation from the Wright Family Foundation. Mothers referred to the service receive one-on-one support from Plunket Nurses trained as certified lactation consultants*, or fully trained breastfeeding specialists via the new video conferencing service using Zoom software. Available through PlunketLine, Plunket’s 24/7 parent helpline, this new video conferencing service allows Plunket to work directly with mothers who have been referred and provide advice as they are feeding, PlunketLine Manager Denise Shera says.

Plunket supports calls to ban smoking with kids in cars

Plunket supports law reform that helps eliminate smoking in vehicles when children are present, as all smoking is harmful, Chief Nurse Dr Jane O’Malley says. “There is overwhelming evidence that exposure to second-hand smoke is a major risk factor to children’s health. It is implicated in respiratory infections, asthma attacks, sudden unexpected death in infancy (SUDI), glue ear and more.

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