Occupational Therapy New Zealand Whakaora Ngangahau Aotearoa
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Current News

New Special Interest Group Forum / Wānanga Rōpū Aronga Motuhake (WRAM)

Kia ora koutou katoa

We’re very excited to be launching the next version of OTNZ-WNA’s Special Interest Group (SIG) Forum / Wānanga Rōpū Aronga Motuhake (WRAM) from 17 September 2021.

After extensive user and technical testing, we selected Discourse as our platform of choice.

Here’s what you need to know: 

  • The new forum is now accessible at https://sig.otnzwna.co.nz. You can log in using your current OTNZ-WNA membership email and password.
  • As of 17 September 2021, members can no longer post to Google Groups, however members who were previously subscribed to each Google Groups SIG can still access that SIG in read-only mode.
  • We’ve migrated all posts from 1 June 2021 to their respective SIGs in Discourse, so we can keep the current conversations going!
  • The Discourse interface is relatively easy to use, however we’ve compiled two separate set of instructions, depending on how you access Discourse:
    1. Instructions for Desktop (PC or Mac) users
    2. Instructions for Mobile (Apple or Android) users.
  • All members now have access to all SIGs and there is no need to subscribe to each SIG to engage with it. However, if you wish to receive email notifications, you can sign up for notifications for each SIG, or just on specific topics (see section 6. Notifications, in the instructions).
  • All members now have “Watch” notifications set for the OTNZ-WNA Issues SIG, by default. This means all topics and posts for this moderated SIG will be sent to them by email. They will also have Activity Summary notifications sent once a week (if they have not recently logged in). Although you can cancel or reduce notifications at any time, we recommend that you keep SIG Issues notifications to keep up with important notice and events.
  • You can elect to use Discourse solely through email if you prefer. This would involve setting up notifications for your chosen SIG(s) and then emailing, and receiving emails from, a dedicated email address (see the full list of emails below).
  • Your Discourse email is your membership email. If you need to update both (as well as your Discourse display name), you can do so at https://www.otnzwna.co.nz/editprofile

We hope you enjoy using Discourse and if you have any technical issues, please do not hesitate to email [email protected]

Ngā mihi

SIG Emails

To create a new topic in a SIG, send an email with a new subject line to the relevant SIG address below. To continue threads in any existing topic, simply reply to received emails. Please remove extraneous content such as long email signatures and disclaimers, where possible.

OT Week – Toolkit and Upcoming Event Details

A toolkit for 2021 Occupational Therapy Week, which is 25 - 31 October. This year's theme is Celebrating Excellence / Hei Whakanui i te Rawe. There's printable resources as well as a competition for all members.
Membership-only content, please login to view, or join today.

Bed Sticks and Bed Levers

Kia ora members,

The OT Board of NZ were recently contacted by the Coroner’s office about the use of bed sticks or bed levers. While we know most of you already understand the risks associated with using these tools, we want to make sure that everyone understands this risk.

Bed sticks/poles and rails have been used where people receive care in cases of injury risk, impaired mobility, nocturia, incontinence, sleep disturbances and mental health issues (Rollins, 2013).

Bed sticks/levers/poles pose a risk of injury or death. To promote public safety, occupational therapists involved in the recommendation and provision of bed sticks/poles should implement appropriate risk assessment and mitigation. These links may help with understanding employer/practitioner responsibilities in these situations, and the Occupational Therapy Australia’s statement provides useful information.

Annual General Meeting 2021 Postponed

Given the current Covid restrictions and the uncertainty of alert levels going forward, council have agreed to postpone the Annual General Meeting (AGM) until October. Please reschedule the AGM in your calendar now.

Date:                     October 28, 2021
Time:                     6:30 pm
Medium:                Zoom

This will allow on-site auditing processes to be completed whilst the Wellington region is in alert level 2. Furthermore, since head office staff will need to be on hand during the AGM to assist with technical support during discussions and voting, and to communicate updates to the councilors, safe distancing measures will have to be managed to meet health and safety obligations. This can be achieved in alert level 2 with the assistance of head office staff.

For more information about the rules of the AGM, please refer to this document.

2021 Online Event: Looking Beyond the Horizon

Kicking off our Online Event for 2021, is Professor Mary Butler – currently head of school for the new Occupational Therapy department of Adelaide University – with this year’s Frances Rutherford lecture, starting at 10am November 15th 2021. Mary’s session is provisionally titled Turas D’anam which is Irish for “The Journey”.

We hope you’ve got your diary marked with those dates: November 15th to 19th 2021. The for this year’s event is: Looking Beyond the Horizon, Te Mātai ki Paenga Rau

New Local Area Network in Canterbury

Kia ora whānau,

A new Local Area Network (LAN) for Canterbury OTs has been established in Christchurch by Rebecca Barnard.

The first inaugural meeting is scheduled to be held this Thursday 8th July at 7:30 at Coffee Club Riccarton (located in Westfield, Riccarton).

OTNZ-WNA encourages all OTs in the area to attend, and members can RSVP to Rebecca by emailing [email protected]

Kia pai tō koutou wiki,


The “Sleep with Disability/Te Moe me te Hauatanga” online self-paced course is available to purchase!

Go to otnzwna.co.nz/sleep for more information.

Sleep with Disability/Te Moe me te Hauātanga Programme Launch TODAY

We warmly welcome all Occupational Therapists to join us TODAY (30th April 2021) at 12:30pm-1pm for the promotional launch of Sleep with Disability/Te Moe me te Hauātanga on ZOOM. 

Please copy and paste this link into your browser to access the zoom event: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84036245652?pwd=MDdOZlo1bUYrTCtpNm8xUDNLd055UT09


OTNZ-WNA 2021 Online Event abstracts Now Open

The programme committee warmly invites you to submit an abstract: https://www.otnzwna.co.nz/otnz-wna-2021-online-event

deadline for abstracts is 30 May 2021

SGM 7 pm Wednesday 24 March 2021 to approve 2019-20 audited financial accounts

A reminder to members of OTNZ-WNA.

SGM by zoom to approve the 2019-20 Audited accounts will be held at 7 pm on Wednesday 24 March 2021.

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/86855578584. For full Audit report  click here

OTNZ Annual & Audit Report 2020

New Date for Auckland SYA!

The new date for  the  Auckland Show Your Ability roadshow is Wednesday April 14 2021.
Venue: Auckland Eventfinda Stadium – North Shore

16 Reasons to add Telehealth to your Practice

February 15, 2021, and Auckland is in lockdown – are OTs using Telehealth regularly or only during lockdown? Are we using a combination of telehealth and face to face intervention methods? I would be interested to hear from others using Telehealth in their practice.

The International Board of Credentialling and Continuing Educational Standards in the USA note numerous reasons Teletherapy can benefit occupational therapists. While the discussion is USA based, I believe Telehealth/Teletherapy can benefit both our clients and our practice. I acknowledge Telehealth is not the best choice for every client, but I know that in some circumstances, it can be effective.

The article quotes 16 Reasons for an OT to add telehealth to their practice, and can be viewed here: https://ibcces.org/blog/2020/09/09/reasons-teletherapy-benefits-occupational-therapist/

Written by Lynda Mance 

Kia kaha Auckland! Covid-19 information updates

Here we go again! As we wait for more information about the latest community transmission in Auckland, at least we can all be grateful that we have proven systems in place to handle this outbreak. In case you need a refresher, we have our  COVID-19 Level 2/3 Guidelines for Occupational Therapists. For those based in Auckland, just remember that the rest of the country is thinking about you and the extra sacrifices you’re making right now – kia kaha Tāmaki Makaurau!

Registrations open for ATSNZ Disability Expo

Registrations open for ATSNZ Disability Expo
Tue 16 – Wed 17 March 2021, Vodafone Events Centre, Manukau
The disability services event of the year – Free Registration, FREE Conference Program & Easy Access for all
Pre-register for FREE Parking and A FREE Coffee

Share Your Feedback

Kia ora everyone! Have you had your say regarding our annual events? Share your thoughts by completing our 2 minute survey at the following link by the end of today: https://surveymonkey.com/r/ZQG23LK.

Show Your Ability 2021 – 1 month away!

Register for N.Z’s Premier Annual Disability Equipment Show! See more information here: https://www.3am.net.nz/show-your-ability/

New Year, New Role?

Check out one of these job opportunities and go forward in 2021 with a new role: https://www.otnzwna.co.nz/vacancies/

Ngā mihi o te tau hou/Happy new year!

Happy 2021 everyone!

We hope you all had a safe holiday season, and are excited for what 2021 will bring. As we are now back in action, feel free to send us any questions about membership, or what will be coming up in 2021, through our social media platforms: https://www.otnzwna.co.nz/contact/, or email us: https://www.otnzwna.co.nz/contact/. Keep an eye out for some great things coming this year!

Noho ora mai (stay well)!