We are keen to regularly profile rehabilitation-related research conducted within NZ.  Please contact us if you would like us to profile a published paper, poster or conference presentation

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  • 08 Feb 2023 7:46 PM | Rachelle Martin (Administrator)

    This statement has been provided by ACC, asking that we share the following, particularly with members with an interest in musculoskeletal and/or orthopaedics.These statements include the use of Xray and ultrasound imaging, as well as injections and knee arthroscopy treatments for ACC clients.

    Tēnā koe,

    As part of our commitment to delivering good outcomes for our clients, NZOA and ACC have collaborated on the Choosing Wisely campaign, which seeks to reduce unnecessary low-value treatments and tests for orthopaedic patients within New Zealand. 

    We have created five statements for the Choosing Wisely campaign to promote a culture where clinicians avoid low-value and inappropriate interventions, as well as support patients and health professionals to have well-informed conversations about their treatment options, leading to better decisions and outcomes.

    These five statements reflect current research, evidence, and clinical best practice in orthopaedics. The intent is that clients will only receive clinically appropriate procedures which are meaningful for a diagnosis and to inform their treatment plans.

    These statements are now available on the Health Quality & Safety Commission website: I encourage you to take a moment to read it and consider what it means for your practice and how you work with our clients.      

    We acknowledge there will be some differences in delivery based on several factors including geographic location, local expertise, and available equipment.


    We’d like to thank NZOA and the genuine partnership we have created through this work. This collaboration is an example of our commitment for the benefit of providers and our clients. We would also like to thank RANZCR and others who worked with us on these statements for their valuable contributions. 

    If you have any immediate queries, please contact Emma.O’

    Ngā mihi nui,

    Dr John Robson

    Head of Health Partnerships and Chief Clinical Officer for ACC

  • 31 Oct 2022 3:00 PM | Rachelle Martin (Administrator)

    Last week ACC communicated with organisations who held contracts with them, advising them of rate increases ACC is applying following the Allied Health MECA settlement earlier this year.  A copy of the communication is below.  

    If you have any questions please contact your ACC Portfolio Advisor, or Engagement and Performance Manager.  

    Kia ora koutou, 

    As you’ll be aware, in June a Multi-Employer Collective Agreement (MECA) was settled for Allied Health professionals. Next week we’ll issue you with contract variations including rate increases to reflect this.  

    We’ve applied the MECA increase to the Allied Health worker pay band component of the relevant service codes in your contract. This is in addition to any increases provided within the last year, prior to the signing of the MECA.  

    Each service code is made up of several components (e.g., pay bands, public holidays, administration, and overheads). The increase has been applied to the Allied Health worker wage components only.  

    Some contracts will also receive increases related to other changes, including staff sick leave allowances and the Matariki public holiday, other relevant MECA settlements, and to allow for general inflation, where these changes have not been allowed for in previous variations. This means you’ll see different increases depending on which contract(s) you hold with us. 

    Variations will be provided for the following contracts: 

    Allied Health Services – Hand Therapy 

    Allied Health Services – Physiotherapy services  

    Allied Health Services – Podiatry 

    Artificial Limb Services 

    Burn & Scar Management 

    Concussion Services 

    Concussion – Secondary Proof of Concept 

    Functional Capacity Evaluation  

    Home and Community Support Services – Integrated (IHCS) 

    Initial Occupational Assessment  

    ISSC – Integrated Services for Sensitive Claims 

    Living My Service 

    Non-Acute Rehabilitation 

    Non-Acute Rehabilitation Pathways  

    Orthotist Services  

    Pain Management Services 

    Residential Support Services 

    Services for the Blind/Visual Rehab Service 

    Soc Rehab Asses - Social Rehabilitation Needs Assessment 

    Soc Rehab Asses - Specialised Assistive Technology 

    Soc Rehab Asses - Specialised Education (Support) 

    Soc Rehab Asses - Specialised Housing (Modifications) 

    Soc Rehab Asses - Specialised Wheelchair and Seating 

    Soc Rehab Asses – Support Needs Assessment  

    Spinal Cord Injury Rehabilitation Service  

    Spinal Injury Vocational Services 

    TBI Residential Rehabilitation Service 

    Training for Independence - Adult with other injuries 

    Training for Independence - Adults with sensitive claims 

    Training for Independence - TBI 

    Training for Independence - Children and Young People 

    Training for Independence Advisory Services 

    Vocational Independence Occupational Assessment 

    Vocational Rehabilitation Services. 

    We’re doing our best to get these contract variations to you as soon as possible. Please note that you will need to have received, signed, and returned your contract variation by 20 November 2022 to allow you to bill for any services delivered on or after 1 December 2022 at the new rates. 

    You'll also need to update your invoicing systems to reflect the new rates. If you continue to bill at the old rates for services on or after 1 December 2022, we won’t be able to backpay the difference. 

    If you have any questions about the changes to your contract, please contact your Portfolio Advisor or Engagement and Performance Manager (EPM). 

    Ngā mihi  

    ACC Recovery Services

  • 13 Dec 2021 5:07 PM | Rachelle Martin (Administrator)

    Thanks for your patience while we work on transferring this year’s NZRA Conference to 2022. We are excited to announce the new conference dates as:


    The conference will still be held at the Novotel Hotel in Rotorua with the same conference format. All the information about the conference can be found on the conference website.

    If you had registered for the conference, it will automatically be transferred over to the new dates. If these dates do not suit, please contact Brooke Miller to cancel, and a refund will be organised. As advised in our earlier communication, we cancelled any accommodation booked through the registration process for the September dates. We have now secured some rooms at the Novotel for the new conference dates. Therefore, if you would like to rebook your accommodation please contact Rosanna Carleton

    If you are yet to register for the conference, we invite you to join us to participate in a national hui to discuss, debate, and share knowledge about rehabilitation in Aotearoa. We have extended the early bird registration fees to 31 December 2021 so don't delay and register today.

    We look forward to you joining us in April 2022!

    Dr Rachelle Martin
    Conference Convenor

    Professor William Levack
    NZRA President

  • 25 Aug 2021 9:46 AM | Sara Crow

    Given the recent changes in COVID Alert Levels, the NZRA Executive and the Conference Planning Committee has made the difficult decision to postpone the NZRA 2021 Conference, ‘Achieving Equity’, to be held in Rotorua, 17-19  September 2021.

    In making this decision, we have considered: the low likelihood of New Zealand being in Alert Level 1 before 17 September; the challenges of hosting an in-person conference at other alert levels; the cost and impact of not postponing but moving to a fully online conference; the currently high workloads of health professionals in New Zealand; the core objectives of NZRA; and, most importantly, what option would give us the best chance to deliver a high value conference to attendees.

    We are currently exploring options for when the conference can be held and will be in touch with you with more details by Friday 3 rd September.

    We would also like to advise that anybody who booked accommodation via the registration process, Conference Innovators will cancel this and no cancellation fees will apply. If you booked your own accommodation, we would recommend that you make contact with the provider to cancel.

    We are disappointed by the need to postpone what was shaping to be a very thought-provoking and inspiring conference. We are so very grateful for everyone’s willingness to share their insights and kōrero about achieving equity in rehabilitation within Aotearoa NZ.

    We look forward to you joining us when we get the chance to gather again!

    If you have any questions that require immediate attention, please email .

    Otherwise, we will email you again soon with more details.

    Thanks for your understanding.

    Me mahi tahi tātou.

    Rachelle Martin

    Conference Convener

    William Levack

    NZRA President

  • 18 Aug 2021 2:37 PM | Sara Crow

    Mahi Tika–Equity in Employment is a disabled-led employment programme developed by Disabled Persons Assembly (DPA) New Zealand.

    The programme is delivered across the Waikato region in a project funded by Trust Waikato and Te Ara Mahi (TAM), a portion of the Provincial Growth Fund allocated to focus on regional skills and employment development with the aim of getting local people into sustained local employment.

    Disabled people experience marginalisation and discrimination. However, they are resilient problem solvers with a wealth of skills and knowledge on offer.

    Mahi Tika–Equity in Employment is designed and led by disabled people and includes large elements of pastoral care to empower participants and enable them to achieve sustainable employment

    Prudence Walker, Chief Executive of DPA spoke about what it means to be chosen as a finalist.

    This innovation will be presented at the conference and you will have an opportunity to vote for which innovation you think is most deserving of this year's award.

  • 14 Aug 2021 10:39 AM | Sara Crow

    We have a fantastic line up of speakers at this year's conference. Here's a brief bio on each of them, so you can get a glimpse into the diverse group of contributors this year.

    CATE GRACE [Kai Tahu, Kāti Mamoe, Waitaha]

    Cate works as Person with Lived Experience Engagement Lead with the Burwood Academy Trust. She is the founder and kaiwhakahaere of Whānau Whanake, a community-based social enterprise supporting Māori and whānau health and wellbeing.

    Cate also lives with the experience of disability and is involved in the governance of several disability advocacy and Māori organisations.

    Cate’s passion is to increase accessibility and participation for those facing barriers, creating diverse and thriving places within our local communities and wider society.


    Jacquie is of Ngāpuhi, Irish and French descent and is an Associate Professor at the Auckland University of Technology. Her academic practice is focused on social justice, anti-racism and equity in health for Māori.

    Generally, she takes a kaupapa Māori approach to her research, meaning that her projects are based on whānau strengths, community needs and local solutions to complex issues.

    She has a particular interest in the use of creative methodologies of research dissemination and has had her poetry published in several academic journals and books.

    JOSH CALDWELL [Pirirākau, Ngāti Ranginui]

    When Josh is not providing peer support to people with newly acquired spinal cord injury, he works as a research assistant and as the Person with Lived Experience (PLEx) Network Coordinator for the Burwood Academy Trust.

    Josh acquired his SCI in 2016 as a result of an autoimmune disease. Josh’s involvement with peer support research has allowed him to develop his research skills further while also ensuring that the resulting research findings are applicable to people who are learning to live well with a SCI and useable by peer support providers.


    Martin is the Chief Allied Health Professions Officer within the Ministry of Health, working in partnership with the Chief Medical Officer and Chief Nursing Office in providing transdisciplinary clinical leadership and advice.

    The role works at a systems level as well as providing support to clinicians, programmes, and projects across the Ministry. He is aligning a work programme around what he describes as the five challenges facing allied health. This includes the challenges of demonstrating the value add of the allied health professions to population health outcomes; and working towards the concept of transdisciplinary working in the provision of healthcare services. Martin was the 2019-20 New Zealand Harkness Fellow in Health Care Policy and Practice.


    I am a Māori, have a big whānau (family), and belong to many. I was a teacher and an educator for many years but that disappereared when I suffered stroke in 2005. I could not talk or do anything for myself. Though people were all around me, I was terrified and felt alone.

    My brain was damaged, but I knew enough to know that education could give me purpose, direction, and hope. There were educational achievements and successes, but the greatest was knowing who I am and who I belong to.

    I am Rukingi, a stroke survivor.


    Sarah’s personal experience of mental illness shaped her university study with the areas of psychology, medical law, bioethics, and psychological medicine being the focus through to PhD level.

    Combining this theoretical education and personal experience, Sarah has spent the last 20 years working and advocating for an improved mental health sector and societal perceptions of mental health from the perspective of a person who personally experiences mental illness.

    Since 2011 Sarah has worked as a service user academic with the Department of Psychological Medicine, University of Otago. Through this role, she has promoted and progressed service user-led and co-produced education and research.

    This work has resulted in the establishment of "World of Difference" – a service user academia education and research team, which Sarah currently leads. The education and research programs being led or co-produced by the World of Difference team are focused on ending discrimination, and promoting recovery, inclusion, and respect for the human rights of people who experience mental distress.


    Tim has a background in educational psychology, research, and app development. Tim works as a research assistant with the Burwood Academy, and is also a consultant to central and local governments on accessibility issues.

    Tim focuses on using technology to solve accessibility issues after facing many accessibility issues in his own experiences as a tetraplegic.

    Tim has a business, Smart Access, which collects and sells data on 35 accessibility variables to local governments to help better prioritise infrastructure spending. In his spare time, Tim is embarking on PhD studies!

  • 02 Aug 2021 4:02 PM | Sara Crow

    Te Pou Aropā Takitoru has been announced as one of the finalists for this year's innovation award.

    Te Pou Aropā Takitoru is a nation-wide coordinated peer support service providing informal support to those adapting to limb loss. It was officially launched in New Zealand in August 2019 in collaboration with Peke Waihanga, Limbs 4 Life and Amputees Federation of New Zealand reflected in its Māori name – Te Pou Aropā Takitoru.

    The Pou symbolises the three organisations, Peke Waihanga, Amputee’s Federation of New Zealand (Inc) and Limbs 4 Life representing the three Pou supporting the wharenui.

    The service offers pre/post-amputation, living with amputation and partner support from trained volunteers who have experienced limb loss themselves. The service Coordinator matches recipients to a peer support volunteer, conducts follow-up phone calls to evaluate the support provided and facilitates access to other support services as and when needed.

    Matthew Bryson spoke to NZRA about being chosen as a finalist.

    This innovation will be presented at the conference and you will have an opportunity to vote for which innovation you think is most deserving of this year's award.

  • 22 Jul 2021 8:15 PM | Sara Crow

    Just a reminder that the NZRA Conference 2021 early bird registration closes on 31 July.

    Current rego prices for full conference are: NZRA member $550 / Non-member $600 / student/person with lived experience* $350.

    From 1 August the prices for full conference are: NZRA member $750 / Non-member $800 / student/person with lived experience* $400

    One day conference rego til 31 July: NZRA member $350 / Non-member $400 / student/person with lived experience* $200

    One day conference rego from 1 August: NZRA member $400 / Non-member $450 / student/person with lived experience* $250

    It's definitely worth your while to register now! Save yourself (or your organisation) up to $200.

    Go to to secure your spot!

    #rehabilitation #conference #earlybird #NZRAconference2021

  • 30 Jun 2021 6:45 AM | Sara Crow

    Congratulations to NZRA life member and current board member Anne Hawker on becoming an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for her services to disabled people. 

    We caught up with Anne and asked her about her Queen’s Honour. Anne says she was humbled but proud to be acknowledged for her work.

    Anne became the first woman president of Rehabilitation International and used that to “assist disabled women to have a different life,” says Anne. She’s also proud to have been President of the Disabled Persons Assembly and get the Human Rights Act passed as well as the Disability Survey.

    Despite having achieved so much, Anne still sees potential for more change and development within the disability space. “[I’d like to see a] continued move from special into mainstream and clearer when specialised services are required,” says Anne. She’d also like to see more community development in rehabilitation, and for rehabilitation to be available to everyone.

    Anne also wants disability to be part of the diversity conversation, for the stigma towards disabled people removed, for people’s strengths not their deficits to be seen, and for a move away from the medical model to the social model.

    “Disabled people are proud of who we are, and we are proud to use the term disabled people without having others define us,” She adds.

    Anne says that her career path chose her, as she had to give up teaching after being diagnosed with disseminated sclerosis.

    We asked Anne why people should come to the NZRA conference this year. “Be part of the conversation to drive change in the rehabilitation sector to ensure you contribute to a revitalised and relevant rehabilitation sector.”

    The full impact of Anne’s work cannot be measured as her work has been life-changing for so many, but milestones in her career were curated for the Queen’s Honours announcement, and we’ve added some others that need acknowledging.

    • President of Otago DPA & Otago MS Society

    • Setting up Total Mobility in Otago

    • The first non-DHB to establish a home support service for ACC

    • Established the first stroke club and carers group in New Zealand

    • Set up the attendant care scheme in Otago

    • Member of the Taieri Social Service & Dunedin Social Service Committee

    • Ran the Dunedin women’s school girl cricket competition

    • Managed the Otago women’s school girl cricket and school girl hockey teams

    • President of Rehabilitation International from 2008 to 2012 and chaired their Social Commission from 2000 to 2008.

    • Played a leading role in Rehabilitation International’s work towards the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD).

    • President of the Disabled Persons Assembly New Zealand from 1993 to 1997, where she led and partnered a range of policy initiatives and championed all issues facing disabled people from employment, data, human rights; education, health and accessibility.

    • Advocated for the New Zealand Disability Strategy, which then became New Zealand’s negotiating mandate for the UNCRPD.

    • Treasurer of the New Zealand Rehabilitation Association and the Federation of Disability Information Service in the late 1980s and 1990s.

    • New Zealand’s representative to the International Federation of Multiple Sclerosis Society from 1988 to 1993.

    • CEO of the Head Injury Society in 1995/1996.

    • Principal Disability Advisory for MSD since 2007. With the Ministry for Social Development, she singlehandedly implemented the ‘Lead Toolkit: A guide for employing disabled people’, published in 2018.

    • Instrumental in establishing the ‘We Enable Us’ network, providing leadership on effective and inclusive employment of disabled people in the public sector.

    • Been a driving force behind ‘The Accessibility Charter’.

    Well done Anne, we are so proud of you and your achievements so far! And we are grateful for your ongoing involvement in the NZRA.

  • 20 Jun 2021 1:11 PM | Sara Crow

     Jo Nunnerley (and team) were announced as one of our three finalists for the NZRA Innovation Award 2021, for their use of virtual reality to help with brain injury rehabilitation.

    In collaboration with Laura Fergusson Brain Injury Trust (LFBIT), CerebralFix, University of Otago and Callaghan Innovation they used a co-design process with clinicians and people with traumatic brain injury to develop a therapeutic virtual reality tool aimed at increasing the awareness of and teaching self-management strategies for cognitive fatigue after brain injury.

    This tool can simulate real-world situations without having to bring the client to those locations. This could include a supermarket, a cafe/restaurant or a place of work—activities the client would need to interact with as part of their normal daily lives post-injury.

    Cognitive fatigue is the most troubling and longest lasting symptom in 73% of individuals recovering from a traumatic or acquired brain injury. The long-term effects of fatigue can considerably impair an individual's ability to work and lead a normal life, including participating in social activities  with whānau and friends.

    The team used a three-phase co-design approach to develop the virtual reality system, to ensure that input and opinions of people with lived experience of brain injury and experienced clinicians were integrated throughout the entire process.

    Jo spoke to NZRA about what it means to be chosen as a finalist for this year's award.

    This innovation will be presented at the conference and you will have an opportunity to vote for which innovation you think is most deserving of this year's award.

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