Te Whatu Ora update for primary and community care

Te Whatu Ora update for primary and community care

Kia ora koutou,
This update for primary and community care providers covers the following:  
  • Mpox - a reminder that the Te Whatu Ora mpox testing and treatment funding framework for primary and community care has ceased.  
  • Personal protective equipment (PPE) Central Supply – a reminder that changes to the provision of PPE from the Te Whatu Ora Central Supply commence from 1 October 2023.  
  • Vancomycin Resistant Enterococci – background on the local situation in Te Manawa Taki region and Te Whatu Ora national key messages / guidance for primary care.   
  • Community pharmacy Covid-19 anti-viral contracts. 


The Te Whatu Ora mpox testing and treatment funding framework for primary and community care providers ceased on 30 June 2023 as per previous communications sent on 27 February 2023.  

With no new cases since 2 February 2023, the National Public Health Service (NPHS) Mpox Clinical Working Group and the Office of the Director of Public Health confirmed on 24 March 2023 that a continued national response was no longer required.  

Sporadic mpox cases are expected to come across the border, however the risk of sustained and/or undetected community transmission is considered low and instances of mpox in the community will be managed as per current public health guidelines.  

Cases of mpox will continue to be nationally notified, therefore national oversight of the status of mpox in New Zealand will continue. The Institute of Environmental Science and Research will also continue to monitor mpox case numbers and report on any changes over time.   

Guidance on testing, treatment and access to mpox consultation services can be found on HealthPathways. Further information can be found on the Te Whatu Ora website.    

If you have any questions, please contact    .

PPE Central Supply

On 6 June 2023 communications were sent to all current users of the Te Whatu Ora PPE Central Supply to notify that from 1 October 2023, Te Whatu Ora will begin to discontinue publicly funded PPE for all health and disability service providers. The cessation of supply will be managed in a phased approach, on a product-by-product basis, to enable a rundown of surplus stock of certain PPE products.  

Publicly funded PPE will continue to be accessible to all current users of the PPE Central Supply until Te Whatu Ora reaches the desired national stockpile levels of each PPE product for pandemic preparedness. At this time, the product will stop being provided free of charge and you will be required to return to purchasing from the private market.   

The first products to be discontinued from 1 October will be nitrile gloves and isolation gowns. Product discontinuation timings are available and kept updated monthly based on the latest forecast data on the Te Whatu Ora website and can be found at COVID-19: Personal Protective Equipment Central Supply – Te Whatu Ora - Health New Zealand. This content also provides PPE guidance and resources which may be useful as you return to sourcing PPE from the private market.   

It is recommended that providers engage with suppliers as early as possible to allow adequate time to source appropriate PPE and make purchasing arrangements.   

If you have any questions, please contact 

Vancomycin Resistant Enterococci (VRE)

Te Whatu Ora is aware of a number of cases of VRE in hospital patients across the Te Manawa Taki region.  

Attached you will find national key messages to provide primary care providers with the following:  

  • background information on VRE;  
  • details of the local response in Te Manawa Taki; and   
  • specific guidance for primary care.    
Central Te Whatu Ora has established a national VRE Technical Advisory Group (TAG) to support the development of national infection prevention and control (IPC) guidance and to support Te Whatu Ora district and regional providers, primary care providers and aged residential care facilities nationwide. Once developed, this national guidance will be distributed, but in the interim please refer to this fact sheet for Core IPC strategies for managing VRE in healthcare facilities. 
The guidance and key messages provided have been authored by central Te Whatu Ora Infection Prevention and Control Clinical Leads, along with contribution from the VRE TAG.  
If you have any questions, please contact  
Community pharmacy Covid-19 anti-viral contracts

We would like to apologise for the confusion regarding the comments made in relation to the letters of intent, funding approvals and contract extensions for community pharmacies.  

We can confirm that the national sector operations team is finalising the process to extend the COVID-19 anti-viral contracts and payments will be made once signed off.  
If you have any questions or feedback, please contact  
Ngā mihi,


Anna Ramsey 

Senior Communications and Engagement Advisor  

Outbreak Response Directorate 

waea pūkoro:+64 21 575 102| īmēra: 

133 Molesworth Street, Wellington  

Follow us on LinkedIn |  Facebook |  Instagram