Ruatonga gearing up

Monday October 16, 2017

The villagers of Ruatonga have been preparing for the 60th anniversary of the tapere’s meeting house to be held next week.

The Ministry of Health is yet to decide on replacement of its secretary Elizabeth Iro, who has taken up a role with the World Health Organisation (WHO).

She was appointed to the post of chief nursing officer by the WHO director-general, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesu, during the 68th Session of the WHO Regional Committee for the Western Pacific in Brisbane, Australia this week.

Congratulating Iro on her appointment, health minister Nandi Glassie said she was leaving behind big shoes to fill.

“Liz’s (Iro) appointment as chief nurse for WHO is a proud moment for me as Minister of Health, for the Cook Islands’ people, the Pacific region and of course the nursing profession,” Glassie said.

“It has always been our hope to have our people, from within the Pacific region, to participate and be heard at the global level. Liz has accommodated that hope.

“I am proud of Liz and I wish her and her family every success in her new post. She has left behind big shoes to be filled.”

Iro is a New Zealand-registered nurse and midwife with a master’s degree in Business Administration and a master’s degree in Health Science.

She took over the secretary’s role with the health ministry in 2012.

A former local chief nursing officer, Iro has worked to meet the health needs of the people of the Cook Islands and the Pacific since graduating as a nurse in 1981 and midwife in 1986.

She has been a close colleague and friend of the WHO Collaborating Centre at the University of Technology Sydney (CC UTS) and a long-standing member of the South Pacific Chief Nursing and Midwifery Officers Alliance since its inception in the Cook Islands in 2004. Iro said she was honoured and humbled to be appointed the chief nursing officer of WHO. She acknowledges the privilege and understand the important opportunity this presents for encouraging better collaboration and coordination to improving health outcomes for the people within the region and globally.

“I think this appointment is going to be raising the profile of nursing and midwifery and I anticipate it will be encouraging and enabling for nurses to work to their full potential if countries are to achieve universal health coverage,” Iro said.

“I bring to this role my lived experience as a woman, a mother, a nurse and midwife, a past president of Nurses Association and Head of a Ministry of Health.

“Nursing can and must take the lead on issues to progress to better health outcome for our people but I know we cannot achieve them without the support of politicians, policy-makers and non-nursing health leaders.”

Iro said she will need to understand some of the internal mechanisms and structures that can best support the work in progressing the WHO agenda especially towards the social goal of “health for all” through primary health care and Universal Health Coverage.

Health ministry in a statement said their management and staff were very proud of Iro’s achievement.

“She has been the driving force to ensuring the ministry obtains and retains the Excellence Service Award from the Public Service Commission. The Ministry of Health has held this award for the past two years,” the statement added.

The position of WHO chief nurse has been vacant since 2010 and the reinstatement of this position and the appointment of Iro indicates the value that the new WHO director-general, Dr Tedros holds for the nursing and midwifery professions within the organisation.

Tasty snack for a worthy cause

Monday October 16, 2017

Pictured grabbing a tasty breakfast snack from the Cook Islands Breast Cancer Foundation sausage sizzle outside the ANZ Bank yesterday morning were Tony Fea’o, Tayla Beddoes and Jess Mather from Cook Islands Tourism Corporation.

Rotaract Cook Islands will be holding a school holiday event for children tomorrow at the Aotearoa Centre in Tupapa Maraerenga.

Teen faces wounding charge

Friday October 13, 2017

A teenager who was sent to Rarotonga in an attempt to put him “on the straight and narrow” is being charged with two charges of wounding with intent to injure and may be facing jail time.

PSL ship in ‘minor’ crash

Friday October 13, 2017

During its first voyage in more than a year last Sunday, the Pacific Schooners Ltd vessel Tiare Taporo collided with Tapi Taio Shipping’s ship Lady Moana and the wharf.

Athletics day relieves study pressure

Thursday October 12, 2017

It was an intense week of practice examinations for Tereora College senior students last week but on Friday students were able to release all of that pressure at the school’s Athletics Day.

Students learn to serve community

Thursday October 12, 2017

As part of Tereora College’s mission of developing excellence in citizenship: “Tangata Tiratira Tu”, school staff and students were involved in serving the Cook Islands community on Friday last week.

A number of police officers were presented with awards at a special Commissioner’s Parade which took place on Tuesday morning at the forecourt of the Cook Island Police headquarters.

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