National 18 October 2016
Dear Member,

Welcome to the eleventh issue for 2016 of ASMS Direct, our national electronic publication.

You can also keep in touch with the latest news and views on health issues relevant to public hospital specialists via our website, which contains links (at the top of the home page) to our Facebook and LinkedIn pages, as well as our quarterly magazine The Specialist. We’re also on Twitter at

Annual Conference highlight: research on senior medical workforce intentions

Coming up at the ASMS Annual Conference, Principal Policy and Research Analyst Dr Charlotte Chambers will present initial findings from a recent survey of ASMS members on future career intentions in the next five years, including intentions to leave New Zealand or retire from medical practice.

This study will add to the senior doctor workforce intelligence being gathered by ASMS following the two national membership surveys on presenteeism and burnout. Together, they will provide a valuable source of information for promoting evidence-based workforce policy. This latest survey will help to gain a better understanding of the effects of an aging workforce on future workforce capacity needs, as well as providing key insights into the reasons why people are considering exiting the public health workforce.

Reminder: Annual Conference dates

A reminder – please put the date of the Annual Conference in your diaries if you haven’t already: 17-18 November at Te Papa, Wellington.

The Conference will feature a range of presentations on topics relevant to your work, including the ASMS-DHB MECA negotiations, an address from Health Minister Jonathan Coleman, Dr Derek Sherwood (Chair of Council of Medical Colleges) on proposed changes to the funding model for vocational medical training, and the latest research on New Zealand’s senior medical workforce.

Every branch is entitled to a set number of delegates – please contact our Membership Support Officer Kathy Eaden at to see if your branch requires delegates.

The Specialist

The latest issue of the ASMS magazine, The Specialist, is about to land and it features a detailed report of ASMS’ research on burnout, a call for respect and team work in hospitals, a look at the workforce shortage that’s putting a squeeze on psychiatry, and what a typical day looks like for an ASMS industrial officer. We also report on the results of the annual salary survey and talk to one of this country’s most experienced occupational hospital physicians.

Did you know...about SMO appointments?

Did you know that the clinical director of your department (or a nominated SMO/SDO from the department) must sit on any SMO/SDO appointments committee?  The local senior staff committee (or agreed body) also has the right to nominate a further member of the interview panel, from an appropriate specialty, for SMO and senior clinical positions. You can read Clause 52 at

Kind regards

Ian Powell
Executive Director