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Kia ora and welcome to the third issue of Spotlight on Tobacco

We hope you find these newsletters helpful. Please let us know if there is anything you would like us to include or address. We would love to hear from you!

More Support for the Primary Care Targets

There has been a tremendous amount of hard work go into the Better help for smokers to quit target in secondary care. Collectively, DHBs are now well on the way to achieving and maintaining the 95 percent target. During this process, vast experience and knowledge has been gained and strong systems have been created to maintain ongoing performance. There is an expectation from the Minister that this will continue to be maintained, or among those DHBs that have not achieved the target, that it will be improved.
The Minister would now like to see... read more

National Training Provider for Midwives

The Ministry of Health has contracted a training provider for midwives to support pregnant women who smoke to quit.

The contract has been awarded to Smokechange Ltd and will run from 1 July 2013 to 30 June 2016.

The service aims to provide the midwifery workforce across New Zealand with the confidence, knowledge and skills to safely and effectively encourage and support pregnant women who smoke to quit.

Smokechange intends to start delivering training from September.  They will be in contact with key stakeholders in each region to notify them of their training plans and will employ comprehensive recruitment strategies to encourage midwives to attend the training.

If you have any questions regarding the service, please contact jo@smokechange.co.nz or kelsey@smokechange.co.nz

Innovation Funding - Successful Projects

The Pathway to Smokefree New Zealand 2025 Innovation Fund was established in 2012 to advance progress towards the Government’s aspirational goal of Smokefree Aotearoa 2025.  Its purpose is to support innovative approaches to reduce the smoking prevalence among Maori, Pacific people, pregnant women and young people across New Zealand.

The first funding round for the Innovation Fund was conducted between November 2012 and June 2013.  The following projects have been funded in Round One.

ABC Smoking Cessation Course - now available on LearnOnline website

As of 1 July, the ABC smoking cessation course is now available online at LearnOnline. LearnOnline holds all of the Ministry's e-learning resources.

To access the course, a log-in and registration is required. A link on how to register is available here.

The course is for registered health professionals. You may log on as a guest to complete the course, however, if you wish to receive a certificate and become a quit card provider you will need to log on, register and complete the course.

We are currently working with Kineo on how to access a monthly report which will show us who within a DHB has completed the online course. This will be available to Smokefree Coordinators and members of the Tobacco Control team. We will let you know when this is available.

The course content is currently being reviewed and redesigned. We will keep you updated in an upcoming Spotlight on Tobacco newsletter when this has been completed. We expect the launch of this will be around the same time the revised Smoking Cessation Guidelines are made available, around the end of the year.

The Team

Here is an overview of the Tobacco Control team at the Ministry of Health today. In each issue of Spotlight on Tobacco, we will introduce each team member in a bit more detail (as below).

Health Targets and Policy
Paul Badco, National Programme Manager (DDI) 04 816 2949
Brendon Baker, Senior Advisor, Policy (DDI) 04 816 3930
John Stribling, Advisor, Policy (DDI) 04 816 4395
Leigh Sturgiss, Senior Advisor, Primary Care (DDI) 04 816 2554
Monique Leerschool, Senior Advisor, Community Health Service Improvement (DDI) 04 496 2085
Heather Button, Advisor, Secondary & Maternity (DDI) 04 816 2978
Irene Kilford, Senior Advisor, Innovation Funding (DDI) 04 496 2550
Alofa Tiai, Programme Administrator (DDI) 04 04 496 2442
Dr Hayden McRobbie, Clinical Advisor
Karen Evison, Tobacco Control Champion
Dr John McMenamin, Tobacco Control Champion (Primary Care)
Public Health Tobacco Control Service Funders
Manaia King, Manager (DDI) 09 580 9119
Jo Muschamp, Senior Portolio Manager (DDI) 09 580 9013
Tony Brown , Portfolio Manager (DDI) 07 929 3633
Colin Charan, Portfolio Manager (DDI) 04 816 3911
Rebecca Kemp, Portfolio Manager (DDI) 03 974 2313


Alofa Tiai joined the Tobacco team in February 2013 as the Programme Administrator. Her key role is to support the administrative tasks of the team and make sure everything is running smoothly.

Alofa studied at Victoria University, earning a commerce degree with a double major in Tourism and Management. 

In her spare time, she enjoys playing volleyball and watching her son play rugby. She is also an avid reader.