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Read the Latest From BOPDHB CE, Helen Mason - 6 August 2019

In previous newsletters, I’ve mentioned the work of the BOPDHB Travel Plan Group (part of the Healthy Living Team) and the exciting possibilities that work holds.


BOPDHB Travel Plan approved by Board

In previous newsletters, I’ve mentioned the work of the BOPDHB Travel Plan Group (part of the Healthy Living Team) and the exciting possibilities that work holds.

The group has developed a plan promoting a sustainable approach to transport, reducing sole occupancy vehicle use and maximising active transport options such as walking, cycling and public transport. I’m pleased to announce this plan has now been signed off by our Board.

To inform and underpin the creation of this plan, the group undertook a number of activities including an extensive survey of the travel patterns and attitudes of staff and visitors. A third of our employees responded (1,180 staff) as well as 401 patients and visitors. Their answers revealed a strong car dependency.

• 92% of staff commuted by car and 91% of visitors/patients travelled to hospital by car.
• 90% of staff who travelled by car did so as the sole occupant of that vehicle.
• Of the 1,180 staff who responded 10% live within 2km of work, 30% live within 5km of work, 32% live 5-10km from work and 37% live more than 10km from work.
• Those 1,180 staff travel a combined 25,922 km to work and back each day.

The plan has set out a number of recommendations for helping loosen the shackles of car dependency and these can be seen further down this newsletter in Dr Phil Shoemack’ s conference poster Healthy Transport for a Better Future.

It’s an ambitious plan, and it’s important to state that we’re not going to be able to achieve it all immediately, but there are a lot of very good ideas within it, and many of these will help us with our ongoing work around sustainability.

To view the full BOPDHB Travel Plan go to:  http://docman/comms/digital/oneplacegroups/Healthy%20Transport%20BOPDHB.pdf?Web=1

Sustainability and travel

Complementing the work of our Travel Plan Group is that of our new Sustainability Manager Vicktoria Blake, who is currently conducting some research into understanding how we are using our BOPDHB-owned vehicles.

The research so far has found that we purchase approximately 4,800 litres of Premium Unleaded, 22,700 litres of Diesel, and 234,000 litres of Unleaded 91 fuel each year. And this is only the fuel purchased by fuel card. This creates a footprint of around 647t CO2-e. That’s like filling Pohutukawa House, from basement to roof, more than 39 times with greenhouse gases.

Vicktoria has also been asking staff questions about what they think sustainability is, and what it should be for the DHB. 248 staff members responded to the survey which closed on Friday, with most discussing their concerns with waste creation. Many felt that it is the responsibility of the DHB to take a lead in the community by demonstrating sustainable practice, and more than 50% indicated wanting to be more actively involved in sustainability at the DHB.

Vicktoria will be using the findings of the survey to help guide the creation of a framework for sustainability at the DHB, and will be hosting drop-in sessions to further the discussion on 20 August at Whakatāne Hospital and 22 August at Tauranga Hospital. She will also be contacting all staff who indicated that they wanted to be involved to increase the membership of the Clinical and Non-Clinical Green Teams.

If you didn’t have the opportunity to respond to the survey, and would like to be involved in the discussion, please attend one of the drop–in sessions, or email

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