I was fortunate to be able to catch up with one of my predecessors last Monday evening in the form of Ernie Newman, now a resident of the lovely town of Whakatane in the Eastern Bay of Plenty. He is currently involved in some very exciting projects with the two District Health Boards in the area - Bay of Plenty and Tairawhiti. This project involves the use of video technology to assist remote rural areas to have access to better health care.
Part of the Rural Broadband Initiative (RBI) is focused on delivering fibre to schools and hospitals and its this connectivity that is one of the more exiting outcomes from the project. However, as Ernie says, the primary health care locations such as GP practices and rural health centres, weren't covered automatically by the project. In his role out east, Ernie is working with the DHB's to install video conference equipment in locations such as Waihau Bay (hint: its where a lot of the movie BOY was filmed). To read more about some of what he's up to have a read at these links: