Author Archives: Sue Howell


“Why are we not ‘back to normal’ in level one?

We’d like to thank all our patients for ‘bearing with us’ during the recent months whilst we’ve been forced to change the way that we deliver care to you.  Like most people we’re really happy to see Level 1 arrive.  We’re also conscious that we still need to be vigilant for a return of COVID.  Not only that, but some of the changes we’ve made because of COVID have improved our processes for preventing other infectious diseases and we will be carrying on these changed ways of working for the foreseeable future.

So, what will be different from pre COVID times?

1. All patients will be asked if they have any respiratory (cough, cold, shortness of breath) symptoms and a brief reason for their consultation.  Our receptionists are bound by the Health Information Privacy Code and do not share information with people outside the practice.

2. Patients with cold or flu like symptoms will be seen in our ‘red stream’. This is a separate part of the practice from the ‘green stream’.  These patients will have a phone or video consultation with the doctor prior to seeing a GP in person.

3. The patient portal will only be available for booking virtual (video or telephone) consultations. This is because of the need to ask people screening questions before they come to the practice.

4. Telephone & video consultations: Virtual Consultations will be offered when safe and clinically appropriate.  This has the added benefits of ensuring no transmission of ’bugs’ and convenience for you.

We thank you again for understanding the changes we’ve made and of course welcome any constructive feedback on these changes.

The MHC Team.

Level 2 Update

How is level 2 going to work at MHC?  We are open and here to help.  During level 2 MHC will be offering our usual services but, in accordance with guidance from the Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners, we’re still aiming to have as few people in the waiting room as possible.

We will continue to offer remote consultations via phone or video for those people who don’t need a ‘in person’ appointment.  If you think you may need a ‘in person’ appointment, our team will book a telephone ’triage’ consultation with a GP  who will take a history and arrange an in person visit to the practice if necessary.  Thanks for your understanding whilst we all get used to this new system and find out the smoothest way for it to work.

The MHC Team.

Level 3 Update

We hope you are all staying well during these challenging times.

  1. The Flu vaccine is now available for all who wish to have it.  We have a limited supply available but have been advised we will be getting more after the 11th May.  We are running a drive thru clinic to minimise patient contact.
  2. As per government recommendations, cold and flu-like symptoms should be tested for COVID-19.   We are offering this service please phone reception if you meet this criteria.
  3. All phone and MMH prescription charges for all children 13 years and younger have been reduced to $10.
  4. All childhood and adult vaccinations are being offered.
  5. We are now encouraging all women that are due for their Cervical Screening to make an appointment.

Please phone reception on 466 5011 if you have any queries or to book an appointment.

The MHC team.


We are still here for you!

MHC remains open during the Covid – 19 level 4 lockdown and has capacity to deal with your health needs.   We are here to help with any problems that may have arisen during the lockdown period (accidents, illnesses etc.) but can also help with long term and minor health problems.   We are trying to do the majority of our work via telephone and video consultations but are still seeing patients face to face where necessary.

We can still book 6 week, 3 months, 5 months, 15-month immunisations and any 4 year olds that have not had their first MMR.  We are running drive through clinics in the garage so you do not have to come into the building.

If you have any respiratory symptoms (cough, shortness or breath, runny nose, sore throat, loss of sense of smell) and need to come to the practice you will be asked to come to a part of the practice that we have designated for patients with these symptoms.   If you don’t have any of these symptoms then you will be seen in another part of the practice.  We are asking all patients to wait in their car where possible.  You’ll be contacted by a member of staff when your appointment is about to start.

Thanks for your understanding in these strange and trying times.   ‘Stay safe!’ With best wishes from the MHC team


We’ve received limited stocks of the flu vaccine and are running flu vaccination clinics over the coming days.  Please note that these flu vaccination clinics are for pre-booked patients and, regrettably, all the appointments have been taken.  We will update our website when more flu vaccines become available.  We do understand that this is frustrating but one ‘silver lining’ to the current COVID 19 lockdown is that there will also be less chance for influenza to circulate in our community.

We are expecting more flu vaccines at the end of April.


As per Ministry of Health advice, from 8am Monday 23rd of March, MHC will no longer allow walk in services without prior contact with the practice.  Please contact MHC online via Manage My Health or phone 466 5011.

You can enrol with MHC online services (Manage My Health) by contacting reception or emailing



We are now offering GP telephone consultations

Due to the current COVID-19 outbreak situation we’d like to avoid bringing patients in to the medical centre.  At times your health needs may be met by having a consultation with your GP on the phone, for example repeat prescriptions, discuss lab results or advice where a physical examination is not needed.

Usual fees will apply however we are hoping this alternative will be more convenient and save you time coming into the practice.  Please be aware that in some situations your GP may not be happy to complete your request without a physical assessment and may request you make a routine appointment.

If you wish to book a GP telemphone consulation please phone 466 5011 to ask reception.

To avoid a billing fee please pay before the end of the month: Mornington Health Centre. Account number: 01-0902-0059423-02. Reference: Your full name and date of consultation.



Covid-19 (Coronavirus) Update

If you have concerns or questions relating to the Coronavirus please phone 0800 358 5453 – it is free and available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week OR visit the MOH website

If you have symptoms of Coronavirus and have travelled to or from the following countries China, Iran, Hong Kong, Italy, Japan, Republic of Korea, Singapore or Thailand in the last 14 days  OR you  have you had close contact with a person with confirmed coronavirus – please phone reception for advice (PLEASE DO NOT COME IN OR BOOK AN APPOINTMENT VIA MMH).

Symptoms include: fever AND cough, shortness of breath or a sore throat.

Coming soon – access to your consultation notes via Manage My Health!

Currently patients enrolled with the online patient portal,  Manage My Health, can access their lab results, order prescriptions, book appointments, see recalls coming up and email the health team.

Soon you will also have access to your consultation notes.  We plan to have this function available from the 2nd of April, 2020.   Only notes written from this date will be available via the portal.

Please be aware that medical records cannot be a verbatim account and medical jargon is used along with abbreviations.  Some terms have different meaning to the lay person.  Medical notes are often brief and condensed to points that are most clinically relevant.  If you have questions about what has been written please do not hesitate to ask at your next consultation.  Legally changes to existing notes are not allowed but an amendment can be added at a later date.

How long after my consultation will I be able to see what was written?  It can take up to 24 hours for the clinician to finalise your notes.  Please note that come clinicians can write their notes in full at the time of the consultation, but others make brief notes or headings and write them up later on in the day.  Not all tasks associated with the visit will be done within this time frame as research and other actions to be taken my take longer.

If you are not currently registered with Manage My Health and wish to have access to all the benefits listed above please phone the friendly reception team on 466 5011.


Measles Vaccine Update

There is limited Measles vaccine stock currently in NZ and the Ministry of Health has been prioritising how it is distributed.  While the current vaccine supply is limited, the priority groups as determined by the Ministry of Health are children aged 15 months and 4 years old getting their MMR vaccine as part of the Immunisation Schedule.

MHC have enough supply to immunise these children.  We will continue to keep you up to date on any future changes.

The Immunisation Advisory Centre provides up to date information about measles immunity and the MMR vaccine on their website:

For more information on measles please visit the Ministry of Health website.