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Health to review phone system after complaints

Monday 8 April 2024 | Written by webmaster | Published in


Health to review  phone system  after complaints
Secretary for Health Bob Williams. TMO/24040122

Te Marae Ora Ministry of Health will be reviewing the current process with a sole receptionist and consider a more centralised call station to improve call management for both the Tupapa Primary Care and Oral Health.

Health Secretary Bob Williams responded to queries regarding complaints raised a week ago about unanswered phone calls at the Tupapa Dental Department.

Williams said: “The day in question was a busy day for dental appointments which was like every other day as the dental team and the sole receptionist had to manage appointments, urgent calls and walk-ins.”

“While we are not sure as to when the calls were made, just for the information of the public that the dental office closes between the hours of 12pm and 1pm for lunch break.”

However, Williams said Te Marae Ora phone system was designed so that when the main phone line is busy on a call, the next caller when calling the same number (dental office number) will try and find the next available phone line for the caller to be redirected.

“It may have been a case where the call was redirected to a phone where no one was at that station to answer the call, understanding that all dental officers and technicians are not always at their desks or stations to be able to answer the calls.”

With the upcoming renovation work that will take place at the Tupapa Primary Care and Oral Health in the coming months, Williams said “it is also timely for TMO to review the current process with sole receptionists to consider a more centralised call station for both the Tupapa Primary Care and Oral Health”.


graham roper on 08/04/2024

To help with the review, a second receptionist at 40 hours per week, 48 weeks a year (operational time) is $23,040 per year @$12 per hour. This is less than the cost of 2 overseas trips by the SOH to events that don’t acutely assist the health and well-being of the people. The increase in patients seen/treated would increase while at the same time reduce pressure on front line staff with the extra support. There, review complete, any questions?