Monday 16 October, 2017
Better information gets hip and knee patients back on their feet faster
Better information for Bay of Plenty patients about what to expect before, during and after total hip or knee
replacements is helping them get back on their feet faster.
As part of a national programme, the Bay of Plenty District Health Board (BOPDHB) has been providing weekly education
classes at both Tauranga and Whakatāne hospitals. At the sessions, well in advance of surgery, patients learn what to
expect and what they can do to aid their recovery.
Maketu man Charles Peni, who had a knee replacement earlier this year, credits the information with getting him back on
his feet faster.
“I knew the operation was going to be a major. And I know plenty of people who’ve had knee replacements and who’ve had a
slow recovery. Having education sessions and all the information at my fingertips well before my operation meant I was
Charles had his operation in Whakatāne Hospital in March. After three nights in hospital he was able to go home.
Since the sessions were introduced, the average time total hip and knee replacement patients have had to stay in
hospital has dropped from 4 to 3 days. It’s also below the national average.
“Making sure patients are well informed before their surgery is really important. It helps them prepare, both physically
and mentally and recover quicker which helps to reduce the risk of complications,” said Service Improvement Programme
Manager Wendy Carey.
A comprehensive handbook on the process is also provided. 91% of hip and knee replacement patients surveyed this year
rated the handbook as highly valuable. 98% said they felt well prepared for their surgery and discharge from hospital
having read the book.
Charles Peni is well on the recovery path. He was playing competitive tennis prior to surgery and he’s adamant he’ll be
back on the court this season.
“I’m following the advice and now having physiotherapy on my knee at Tauranga Hospital. Where I live I could go to
either hospital. I had my op in Whakatāne Hospital but a physio appointment came up in Tauranga, so I opted for that. It
really makes no difference to me the staff have been great at both hospitals.”
Charles says his knee’s getting better every day. He’s even managed a short jog to the odd lamppost. “I’ve always
believed in keeping yourself fit. Some of our tennis club members are in their 80s and still going strong and I plan to
do the same.”
You can read the handbook by following the link below.