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February 16, 2018
Peter, Emma, Salvation Army 2

Family Doctors donates to The Salvation Army

To celebrate 30 years of medical practice on the Coast, Family Doctors wanted to do something for the local community We have partnered with Emma Hall from Earthlings who imports organic and ethically manufactured children’s clothes from India. Due to her generosity we were able to purchase hundreds of clothing items at a very discounted price and then pass them […]
February 1, 2018
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Medication

I know I’m going to get into trouble for this but we have a saying in our house, “Life is for people who can’t cope with drugs.” It’s a joke, OK?  But it means that my children have grown up not afraid of, or unduly fascinated by, drugs. Doctors are often accused of being in the pocket of Big Pharma, […]
December 12, 2017
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Older men and mental health

No apologies for returning to the issue of mental health as it constitutes about 15% of my workload and is still severely under-resourced, given the scale of the problem.  The recent focus on youth suicide has been entirely appropriate but there is also an alarming trend in self-harm in older men, and as my practice ages I am privy to […]
December 12, 2017
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Good medicine considers all the options

Do you have treatment from an acupuncturist, herbalist or a Bowen therapist?  Do you use homoeopathic remedies or dietary supplements?   Have you got faith in complementary and alternative medicine (CAM)?  Well, you’re in good company. From Prince Charles to Hollywood stars to your next door neighbour, the use of CAM is widespread and often passionately supported.  Surveys indicate that up […]
December 12, 2017
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Back in the day

I picked up an old medical biography recently, the life story of Dr G E Waterworth. (People didn’t have full names, back in the day, just initials.)  It gave me in interesting perspective on how far my profession has come. In short, the good old days weren’t. While it might sound exciting to operate on patients on their kitchen tables […]
December 12, 2017
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Training for Base Camp Mt Everest

If you see an old grey-haired guy wandering up your street, don’t ring the nearest rest home. It’s probably me.  I am, I’m proud to say, in training for a trek to Everest Base Camp in September. This is a long-held dream. I read Edmund Hillary’s Nothing Venture, Nothing Win as a teenager and ever since have wanted to walk […]
December 5, 2017
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Medication

I know I’m going to get into trouble for this but we have a saying in our house, “Life is for people who can’t cope with drugs.” It’s a joke, OK? But it means that my children have grown up not afraid of, or unduly fascinated by, drugs. Doctors are often accused of being in the pocket of Big Pharma, […]
December 4, 2017
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Parenting

I’m not an expert on parenting.  In fact I don’t think I was very good at it the first time round, though I’m enjoying the second chance that grandparenting gives you! But after weathering the ups and downs of family life and talking to thousands of parents I have learnt a thing or two. Firstly, there are very few bad […]
November 29, 2017
Dr Coran Turner

Family Doctors Welcomes Dr Coran Turner

Coran grew up in Whangarei and has degrees in both Medicine and Pharmacy from Otago University. He worked as a registered Pharmacist in Queenstown before continuing his studies and practising Medicine. He has worked in various medical and surgical specialities at Auckland City Hospital and Greenlane Clinical Centre. A highlight of his training was the time he spent working with […]
November 28, 2017
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Complaining

I’ve been a doctor for thirty years now and I remember my failures more than my successes. Even good doctors make mistakes, and how to deal with them poses a major challenge to both doctor and patient.  Certainly it is part of modern medical culture that doctors admit their errors, learn from them and fix them if they can. So […]
November 28, 2017
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After Hours service – a lesson in pragmatism

Will the Hibiscus Coast ever have a 24hour a day emergency medical facility? Sadly the answer is “no”. Every time the medical needs of this community are surveyed this question of afterhours care comes up.  It’s been the same for years now and unfortunately some hard realities need to be faced.   We will never go back to the old system […]
May 22, 2017
Worry

Worry

All Black coach, Steven Hansen, has a great one-liner: “Worry is a wasted emotion.”  It’s so true,  and yet on a daily basis I see patients whose lives are adversely affected by anxiety and apprehension.  Some of these are people in whom you would never suspect it – high achievers and public figures.  Certainly a professional Rugby coach would have […]
January 12, 2017
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HEARING CLINIC

On the 1st Wednesday of the month we are running a Hearing Clinic in conjunction with Hear Again Whangaparaoa. Hearing checks, Ear Suction & Hearing Aid checks.
January 3, 2017

Portals

Portals. Sounds a bit sci-fi, but they are not about beaming people up or transporting them to parallel universes. A portal is a direct email connection to your general practice medical file. Our system allows you to make appointments, request repeat prescriptions and check your results.   Portals are big news at the moment, with some new systems being rolled out […]
October 28, 2016

What is normal?

“Everybody is normal until you get to know them”, or in medicine everybody is normal until you’ve done enough tests to prove that they are not! When talking about blood tests the “normal range” generally means the results from the middle 95% of the population. That is, the 2.5% at either end of the scale are “abnormal” by definition.  It’s […]