Reporting Critical Incidents: Attention Director-General Bloomfield

Amy S Van Wey Lovatt made this Official Information request to Ministry of Health

Response to this request is long overdue. By law Ministry of Health should have responded by now (details and exceptions). You can complain to the Ombudsman.

From: Amy S Van Wey Lovatt

Dear Director-General Bloomfield,

I am writing to you as the Director General of Health and Chief Executive for the Ministry of Health, who is responsible for the Health and Disability Services (Safety) Act 2001.

Section 31(5) of the Health and Disability Services (Safety) Act 2001 states:

(5) A person certified to provide health care services of any kind must promptly give the Director-General written notice of—
(a) any incident or situation (for example, a fire, flood, or failure of equipment or facilities) that has put at risk, may have put at risk, puts at risk, or may be putting at risk the health or safety of people for whom the person was or is providing the services; and
(b) any investigation commenced by a constable into any aspect of the services, their provision, or any premises in which they were provided; and
(c) any death of a person to whom the person was providing the services, or occurring in any premises in which they were provided, that is required to be reported to a coroner under the Coroners Act 2006.

The Ministry of Health website page titled "Reporting of critical incidents and death in service" states:
"Disability providers need to report all critical incidents to the Ministry of Health as soon as practical within 24 hours."

"Send your completed form to dsscomplaints[at]health.govt.nz
If your service and the incident site are certified by HealthCert (ie, has 5 or more beds), send it to certification[at]health.govt.nz as well."

The MoH website titled, "Certification of health care services" states:

"HealthCERT is responsible for ensuring hospitals, rest homes, residential disability care facilities and fertility providers provide safe and reasonable levels of service for consumers, as required under the Health and Disability Services (Safety) Act 2001."

Request for clarification:
(1) Must DHBs use the Critical Incident Reporting form on the MoH website to report incidents to you, the Director General, as mandated under section 31(5) of the Health and Disability Services (Safety) Act 2001?

(2) If DHBs do not use this form, I request the documents, policies, guidelines, etc, which provide information on how DHBs must report critical incidents to you, the Director-General, as mandated under section 31(5) of the Health and Disability Services (Safety) Act 2001.

(3) I also request copies of the forms the DHBs must use to report incidents to you, the Director-General, as mandated under section 31(5) of the Health and Disability Services (Safety) Act 2001.

(4) I request documents on how critical incidents are handled by the Ministry of Health, where those documents are stored, and for the length of time in which they are stored.

(5) I request communications from the Ministry of Health to the Office of the Ombudsman which stated that DHBs do not need to report critical incidents to the Ministry of Health, even though this is mandated by parliament in section 31(5) of the Health and Disability Services (Safety) Act 2001. I reference the response from the Ombudsman dated 23 July 2021 (complaint# 529968) which may be accessed here: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1AMO2oK7...

If you have any questions about my request for information, please do not hesitate to contact me through FYI.org.nz to request clarification.

Kindest regards,

Amy S Van Wey Lovatt

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From: OIA Requests

Kia ora Amy

Thank you for your request for official information. This has been added on to your request submitted on 26 July 2021, reference number: H202109412. You can expect a response on or by 23 August 2021.

Ngā mihi

OIA Services
Government Services
Office of the Director-General
Ministry of Health
E: [email address]

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From: Amy S Van Wey Lovatt

Dear OIA Requests,

I am writing to follow up on my request, as I have not received the response by the intended date: 23 August 2021. I understand that the request for information may have been delayed because of the recent lockdown; however, I would have hoped that the Ministry of Health would have put in place contingency plans to ensure continuation of work even through foreseeable repeated lockdowns due to community transfer of the coronavirus.

Yours sincerely,

Amy S Van Wey Lovatt

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From: Amy S Van Wey Lovatt

Dear OIA Requests,

I am again writing to request a response to my request which is well over the legislative time frame.

Yours sincerely,

Amy S Van Wey Lovatt

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