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interRAI Informer
Better Assessment, Better Care, Better Outcomes
Welcome to interRAI Informer -- news updates from interRAI New Zealand for better health outcomes.




In this issue

Seoul National University hosts interRAI NZ
Cathy Cooney interRAI Board Chair
interRAI data tool update
Moving to one host site
High quality of interRAI data
interRAI interoperability
New palliative care option
ACC using interRAI assessments

75% of people in aged care have an Enduring Power of Attorney

Source: interRAI, TAS



Seoul National University hosts interRAI NZ thought leader

The rapid rise in the number of older people in addition to relatively small family sizes is concerning our Korean health colleagues.

interRAI Services Principal Advisor Dr Brigette Meehan was in Korea in October on a short visit to a symposium on big data, funded and hosted by Seoul National University, Graduate School of Public Health.  The University hosted other presenters from China, Hong Kong, Thailand, Japan and Korea.

“There is a lot of interest in effective and efficient ways of providing support for older people to remain in their own homes, in terms of resources and models of care and those are specific challenges for rapidly ageing Asian communities,” Brigette said. 

“Top of mind for them I would say are finding innovative ways to harness research findings, in order to influence health and social policy and practices.” 

“Everyone is aware that decisions must be based on evidence, and if you don’t know what the support needs of the population are, how can you plan? Korea and the other counties involved in the conference had high regard for interRAI assessment data to help understand current and future needs of people.

“The conference audience was mostly Korean post graduate students. The aim was to inform their thinking for future research or their future workplace roles.    A small workshop following the conference, shared research underway and brainstormed future efforts.  

“We all share the same problems to a greater or lesser extent,” Brigette said. “Everyone was keen to collaborate not only to share ideas, but to understand differences as those differences could spark ideas or solutions for different countries.  

“And New Zealand’s growing data base of information from interRAI assessments is a taonga.” 


Cathy Cooney interRAI Board Chair for another two years

interRAI New Zealand Governance Board Chair Cathy Cooney has been re-confirmed as chair for another two years. 

Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield, who appoints interRAI New Zealand Governance Board members, said he was delighted to confirm Cathy Cooney’s re-appointment as Chair to October 2021.  

Cathy Cooney has chaired the interRAI New Zealand Board for the past three years and led “excellent governance” of interRAI in New Zealand” during that time, Ashley Bloomfield said. 


interRAI data tool updated for LTCF QIs

We have updated our national Quality Indicators (QIs) for Long Term Care Facilities (LTCF) and added them to the interRAI visualisation tool.

Health researchers, DHBs, providers and others can use interRAI Quality Indicators from LTCF assessments to create a country-wide view of the presumed quality of care of older people living in aged residential care.

interRAI assessments provide a rich source of aggregated data available through our dynamic online visualisation tool here.

Scroll through QI Code Descriptions to see the various results. You can see the results for four care groups, the type of indicator (incidence or prevalence) and desired direction (lower or higher) are incorporated into the tool. Hover over the chart column to see them.

To understand more about information and insights you can get from the interRAI visualisation tool look at the guide here.


Moving to one host site

We are streamlining and consolidating our interRAI software service to be hosted in a single site instead of two. Currently interRAI software in New Zealand is managed from two DHB host sites, in Canterbury and Taranaki.

Early next year we will be consolidating the technology and interRAI will be hosted just by Canterbury DHB. We anticipate there will be minimal impact. We will tell you more next year.  


High quality of interRAI data

The interRAI Data Quality Report 2018-19 published this month once again shows that interRAI provides high quality data that is reliable and trustworthy.
Our high quality data enables you to make well informed and evidence-based decisions about service quality improvements, conducting research, or making service delivery plans.   

Go here to view the report and service trends.  


interRAI interoperability

interRAI New Zealand is working with DHBs, vendors and other government agencies on a plan to make interRAI software more interoperable with other systems.

Interoperability means software systems can, talk to each other, exchange information, and share and use the data that they receive.  Interoperable software makes it easier for health professionals and providers to get the information they need, to ensure older people get the care they need.

The interRAI New Zealand Governance Board’s position on interoperability with other systems is available on the interRAI NZ website. Refer to this document if you are looking at interoperability.


New palliative care assessment option for Aged Residential Care

interRAI is looking for registered nurses interested in piloting the interRAI Palliative Care assessment.

A pilot for a new Palliative Care assessment option will run for approximately six months. The proposed interRAI Palliative Care assessment will be an alternative to the Long Term Care Facility (LTCF) assessment, for palliative residents in care.

Training will be offered and take about two hours. Registered nurses involved in the pilot can be from anywhere in the country and need to: 

Email interRAI by 2 December 2019 if you or any of your staff are interested in being part of this pilot.

The interRAI Palliative Care Assessment supports work already underway by the Ministry of Health (MOH) and District Health Boards (DHBs) as part of the New Zealand Healthy Ageing Strategy.


interRAI assessments support ACC homecare services

ACC is now using interRAI as their standard assessment tool to support ACC homecare services. ACC and their Home Care providers are using the Contact and Community Health interRAI assessments.


Planning for older people to live well

When the government’s Positive Ageing Strategy was created in 2001, New Zealand had nearly 50,000 people aged 85 years or over. Last year in 2018 there were nearly 87,000 people 85 years and older – 15% of the senior population.

In about 14 years, by 2034, the number of people 85+ is expected to rise to 179,000. This month the government released its five point plan to help older New Zealanders live well,
Better Later Life – He Oranga Kaumātua 2019 to 2034.

New on 


Upcoming dates

  • 18-22 November 2019, HiNZ, Claudelands, Hamilton: Come see us this week at the TAS interRAI stand at the 2019 Health Informatics NZ conference. Look out for interRAI sessions in the conference programme.
  • 3-5 February 202, World interRAI Conference 2020, Leuven, Belgium:   Registrations are now open.
  • 6-7 April 202, NZACA Conference, Te Papa, Wellington: interRAI will be there.
  • 4-5 May 2020, College of Gerontology Nursing Conference, Harbourside, Wellington. Come see us at our stand.
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Keen to read more from us?

We recommend our other newsletter Inside interRAI with operational updates for interRAI users in New Zealand.

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