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Tireless work wins Janine Bycroft top GP award

Dr Janine Bycroft GP HN 1000x600

Mount Wellington GP and Health Navigator Charitable Trust founder and CEO Janine Bycroft has received a Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners Distinguished Fellowship for outstanding services to the practice of medicine.

A Distinguished Fellowship is the highest honour a GP can receive, with Distinguished Fellows recognised as having made sustained contributions to general practice, medicine, or the health and wellbeing of the community.

A GP for over 28 years with a Master’s in Public Health (Hons), Dr Bycroft is also clinical lead at ProCare Health for Hēre Toitu, a project with the Ministry of Social Development.

She is involved with a number of projects to improve long-term condition management at a local, regional and national level and often presents at various forums. This includes being a member of the national PHO Clinical Leads group, the National Telehealth Clinical Leadership group, Whakarongorau Clinical Advisory Group, and was the primary care clinical lead for the National Shared Care Plan programme from 2010–2014.

Dr Bycroft’s areas of interest include collaborative care, care planning, self-management support, quality improvement, chronic care, digital health, health literacy and integrated care.

Visionary and shining example Award nominator Lynda Gee says: “Janine's tireless efforts, devotion to and involvement in primary care integrated in all her roles as an advocate, visionary, creator, forerunner and national representative can only be described as distinguished amongst us. She is a shining example of what one person can do to improve and service our general practice community and those we serve.”

Wellington Professor of Medicine Rebecca Grainger says Dr Bycroft has showed unparalleled tenacity in following her vision of high-quality health information available freely to all New Zealanders.

“Janine has led a team to provide comprehensive health information resources to all New Zealanders with meticulous attention to all manner of details from content, to usability, to sector engagement, and beyond.

“This is a world class product, which Janine has managed to deliver in an incredibly cost-effective way.

“Janine’s leadership and hard work will have positively impacted on literally hundreds of thousands of New Zealanders via the online provision of health information. “

Auckland doctor Adrienne Mills says: “It is an understatement to say that Healthify is an invaluable tool for general practice.”

“This represents many, many hours of unpaid work in the service of general practice and the health of New Zealanders. It demonstrates cultural inclusivity, mana tangata, foresight and creativity. This one New Zealand doctor has moved mountains and foothills to create a single Everest, relevant and up to date and available to every New Zealander.”

The Healthify NZ website supports GPs on a daily basis as a patient and professional resource. It also supports clinicians with a hub for accessing topical and continuing professional development information, wellness support education, clinical skills and cases references.

The website provides up to date, unbiased, trustworthy, patient-centred health information relevant to the NZ environment in easy to understand formats (written info, links to reputable websites, apps, videos etc), also available in multiple languages.

Healthify (formerly Health Navigator) is a household name for GPs nationally, as well as many other health organisations providing an invaluable source of patient education to direct patients and clinicians alike. In the past month, the website has reputed to have hit 1.8 million views, fuelled by the need for COVID related information.

Dr Bycroft received her top award for GPs at the 2022 Fellowship and Awards Ceremony, held during GP22: the Conference for General Practice in Christchurch.

RNZCGP president Samantha Murton congratulated Dr Bycroft for being recognised by her peers in this way and thanked her for her invaluable contribution to the college and general practice.

“With so much misinformation online, it is so important to have sites such as Healthify He Puna Waiora, NZ being kept up to date with science, and evidence-based information that has been reviewed by trained medical professionals.

“The amount of work that goes into the Healthify resource, as well as her GP consultations and research undertakings showcase Dr Bycroft’s dedication to the profession. She is a very deserving recipient of this honour.”