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AH+ Celebration Dinner a night to remember

The crowning event for Alliance Health Plus as we know it went off with a bang, with over 200 guests coming together to celebrate the network and the future of healthcare.

After a three year hiatus, the Alliance Health Plus (AH+) Celebration Dinner last Friday (04 November) brought together and acknowledged those who have worked tirelessly to provide the best possible support to their communities during a global pandemic.

VIP guests included Director of Pacific Health at the Ministry of Health, Gerardine Clifford-Lidstone; guest speaker Te Whatu Ora Chief Executive, Fepulea’i Margie Apa; Te Aka Whai Ora Chief Medical Officer Dr Rawiri Jansen; Labour Party MP for Mana, Barbara Edmonds; Chair of the Health Select Committee and Labour MP, Tangi Utikere; sponsors The Royal College of General Practice New Zealand represented by Dr Samantha Murton and Chief Executive Lynne Hayman; General Practice NZ Chair Dr Jeff Lowe; Ministers and their wives from the Samoan HVAZ churches, Pacific Providers and last but certainly not least, the AH+ Practice Network.

Eleven practices walked away with national health target performance awards, topped off by Queen Street Medical Centre in Ōtāhuhu who achieved the highest results across five national health targets including smoking brief advice, CVD assessment and management, 8-months immunisations, and diabetes assessment and review, as well as exceeding the national target for cervical screening.

AH+ Practice Network Manager, Vanita Hira, also took the opportunity to recognise all 42 practices within the network individually for their contributions in health services to communities and enrolled populations.

“It has been a tough three years, for both Primary Care and the communities we serve, since the last AH+ Celebration Dinner in 2019. In addition to the health target awards, which in themselves are a great achievement by practices in spite of Covid disruptions, we wanted this year to acknowledge each and every practice for their uniqueness within our network.”

AH+ Chief Executive Officer Wayne Williams reflected on the collective Covid-19 experience and celebrated the sector leadership and the collaborative spirit of the entire health sector working closely together with greater purpose and intensity, to create and empower innovative community-designed responses to the challenges the nation faced.

“We salute everyone who has risked their lives in the face of this pandemic, and commiserate with families who have lost loved ones.”

Williams also acknowledged the changing landscape of healthcare in Aotearoa New Zealand post-Covid with not only the disestablishment of District Health Boards to create Te Whatu Ora and Te Aka Whai Ora but also the uncertainty surrounding Primary Healthcare Organisations.

“We are optimistic for the focus on equity, preventative healthcare, accelerated investment into existing successful primary and community care programmes and an all of government response to addressing the social determinants of health.” Williams says that whilst this was the last event of its kind for Alliance Health Plus as we know it, the celebrations won’t stop there.

“We understand the importance of championing stellar achievements from the network, and the intention is to continue in some form the awards celebrations in the future.” Alliance Health Plus is leading the charge into the newly reformed landscape with the announcement that the PHO will join forces with its sister trust, social change agency The Cause Collective (TCC), from 01 December 2022. The combined organisation aims to strengthen the design, delivery and effectiveness of full spectrum services in social and clinical determinants of primary healthcare and wellbeing for Pasifika, Māori and vulnerable communities in South Auckland. TCC Chief Executive, Rachel Enosa, formally introduced herself to the network at the Celebration Dinner, thanking Mr Williams, Chairman Ulu and the rest of the AH+ and TCC Board members for their leadership and courage to chart a new direction.

“Following on from the pandemic we find ourselves in, we see the world has changed and we must change with it. Any organisation that is stuck in inertia and trying to revert back to what they did pre-Covid will be limited in their inability to address the challenges of today and to take advantage of opportunities of tomorrow.

“At Alliance Health Plus and The Cause Collective, we are not going back to business as usual, there is nothing usual about our current economy and the geopolitical environment, our workforce constraints, or the pressures we are seeing across different parts of the health and social care sectors.

“For our underserved communities Covid-19 didn’t create a crisis – it just revealed it. Many of the patients and families you see, have been living with inequity and with inequality for many years, and some across generations. That must change. And that is what this integration between Alliance Health Plus and The Cause Collective is all about.”

Enosa took the time to reassure the clinical network and funding partners that the team will remain fully committed to working with them to lay the foundations of the new health system.

“This is not a merger – it is an integration. The Cause Collective is not just adding in the PHO function to be another arm of the business. No, our intention is to fundamentally transform the way in which patients participate in their primary and community care with a particular focus on Pacific populations and South Auckland.

“We are also being very intentional about continuing to provide excellent quality services to our clinical and provider networks no matter where you are located across this region. We want to make sure you are well positioned for the future health system.”

The evening’s formalities were topped off with special acknowledgements to Chairman Uluomato’otua Saulaulu Aiono for his recent induction into the New Zealand Business Hall of Fame for services to technology and community health, as well as CEO Wayne Williams for six years of service to the AH+ family with a waiata performed by all staff.

Board member Luamanu Maea described the acknowledgements as “splendid, touching and well thought out”.

“Congratulations for recognising two truly amazing, humble and talented leaders.[It was a] lovely touch at the end of the awards presentation by the AH+ staff to show much love and respect for CEO Wayne. Thank you for the wonderful evening of celebration.”

But the night would not have been complete without a knockout performance by highly coveted dance troupe The Fine Mats. The performance by all AH+ staff brought down the roof, presenting a fusion of dance routines reflecting the diversity of cultures within the organisation.


1. BaderDrive Doctors: Achieved over 90% on the National Target for CVD Risk Assessment and Management - Total Population

2. Ōtāhuhu Family Medical Centre: Consistently the highest across the network for all CVD Assessment and Management indicators, with 96% for both their large high needs and medium total population groups

3. Hong Kong Surgery: Highest rate of Cervical Screening per total population in a medium sized practice

4. Tongan Health Society Langimalie Onehunga: Highest performance across two national health targets - Diabetes Assessment and Reviews & Smoking Brief Advice

5. Sandhu Doctors: Maintaining 100% across all indicators for 8 month immunisations for eligible vulnerable populations

6. Victoria Park Medical Suites: Maintaining 100% across all indicators for 8 month immunisations for eligible vulnerable populations

7. Lifeline Medical Centre: Highest performance for Smoking Brief Advice given within a practice with a large population

8. Pukekohe South Doctors: Highest performance for Smoking Brief Advice given within a practice with a medium-sized population

9. Victoria Park Medical Suites: Highest percentage of enrolled patients offered extended mental health consults in the previous Auckland and Waitematā catchment

10. Fellbrook Medical Centre: Highest percentage of enrolled patients screened and followed up for alcohol use in the previous Counties Manukau catchment

11. Queen Street Medical Centre: 100% Smoking Brief Advice for total eligible population; 99% CVD Assessment and Management; 99% 8 months immunisations for total population; 95% Diabetes Assessment and Review for total eligible population; Exceeding the national target for Cervical Screening


1. Jill Pearce – Sandhu Doctors: For 60 years of service to nursing

2. Dr Bruce Arroll – Greenstone Family Clinic: 2021 New Zealand Primary Healthcare Awards GP of the Year

3. South Seas Healthcare Trust: 2021 New Zealand Primary Healthcare Awards General Practice of the Year

4. Dr Juliet Tay and Nurse Practitioner Rebecca Fenn - Te Iti Pounamu Hauora: Taking an AH+ dream and together with their own vision delivering services to those who most need it

5. Our own Joe Glassie-Rasmussen: Elected on to the Māngere / Ōtāhuhu Local Board

6. Our very own Mr Wayne Williams: For six years of service to the Alliance Health Plus Family



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