Health Minister Tony Ryall today announced 48 graduate nurses will receive a scholarship to work in general practices in some of New Zealand’s higher need communities.
“There has been a lot of interest in the scholarships from both the nurse graduates and general practices. As a result, the original plan for 30 scholarships has been increased to 48,” says Mr Ryall.
Last September Mr Ryall announced the government will invest an extra $16 million over four years to support Very Low Cost Access (VLCA) practices. This included a one-off $1.5 million scholarship fund for 30 graduate nurses.
“We want even more new graduate nurses working in our higher need communities and are increasing the scholarship fund to $2.4 million.
“Over half of the graduate nurses have already been appointed and recruitment is well underway for the other positions.
“The graduate nurses will work in communities including Kaikohe, Waitakere, Mangere, Murupara, Kawerau, Wairoa, Wanganui and Aranui.”
“A strong primary health care system is central to improving the health of New Zealanders.
“These 48 graduate nurses will work alongside GPs, practice nurses and other members of the general practice team delivering care to communities with the greatest need.
“This government is committed to providing more New Zealanders with affordable general practice care,” says Mr Ryall.
Funding for the VLCA scheme has increased by more than 85 per cent in the past six years – from $27 million in 2007/08 to $50 million this financial year.
Source: Hon Tony Ryall Minister of Health media statement.