Nicola North visits HSMC

Nicola is currently Associate Professor in Health Systems, Health Systems Section, School of Population Health, in the University of Auckland’s Faculty of Medical & Health Sciences where she has been based since 2008. Find out more information at the School of Population Health, University of Auckland.

Nicola was Academic Director for the School, in addition to teaching (mainly in health management) at undergraduate and postgraduate levels and supervision, and PI of Health Research Council-funded research and a number of evaluations. Prior to 2008, she was PG Director in the newly established School of Nursing and worked in a business school in another university, also in health management. Health workforce research, especially the nursing workforce, is a particular interest, and has included the cost of nursing turnover, impact on the labour market of a significant pay increase (all national studies) and critiquing the concept of nursing productivity. She has also done some work on health management competencies (or capabilities) and on nurse prescribing and recently completed action research on increasing the effectiveness of (unregulated and often unpaid) community workers in health promotion. Nicola is currently working on a series of retrospective analyses of the administrative nurse registration dataset. See Nicola’s recent profile. 

Nicola hopes that spending about 2 months at HSMC will give her the opportunity to step back from a busy few years, and take stock of how the School of Population Health might develop health management and leadership programmes in the light of what is going on here in the UK. Attending HSMC’s Faculty Day and re-acquainting herself with HSMC’s work through the website, has helped in crystallising ideas. One aim, therefore, is to learn from the current management training scheme and the new Leadership Academy programme with a view to how programmes in Auckland can be refreshed. Nicola’s second aim is to do some work on the changing roles and identities of the main players in the health workforce, both the different health professions and management and unregulated care-givers. Patient-centred services and engagement are clearly of high importance in the UK, but not highly profiled in New Zealand outside of specific populations; even so, Nicola will be interested in familiarising herself with this area too as, sooner or later, New Zealand will have a Francis! Nicola is looking forward to engaging with many HSMC colleagues in conversations in coming weeks, and very much appreciates the welcome she has received.