Video transcript

All Special Ukraine Visa Holders are eligible for one free health check in New Zealand. This video presentation, in Ukrainian, provides information about the free health check and how to access it. The presentation is created by Dr Lavinia Perumal, delivered by Dr Olga Dubnytska, a general practitioner in Palmerston North and recorded/produced by the Te Whatu Ora MidCentral communications team.

Information for health professionals

All 2022 Special Ukraine Visa holders (Visa holders) are eligible for a one-off fully funded health assessment to encourage early engagement with the New Zealand health system. The initial health assessment can be delivered by either a general practice or by Healthline.

In this health assessment, health professionals will:

  • support the Visa holders to enrol with a general practice if they don’t already have one
  • do an initial assessment for tuberculosis (TB) and offer screening to exclude TB
  • provide information about what vaccinations the Visa holders may be eligible for and offer vaccinations (if at a GP) or give information about where to get them.

If any abnormal results are identified from the TB test, the Visa holder must be contacted and offered a second free consultation to discuss the test results and management options.

Funded interpreting services are available to support the Visa holders in their spoken language of choice.

A Health Pathways resource for the health assessment has been developed and has clinical information about these health assessments.

Interpreting support

General practices should continue to use existing interpreting services where available in their District.

For providers without access to an existing interpreting services arrangement in their District, the all-of-government telephone and video interpreting service (currently delivered by Connecting Now) is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and is funded by Te Whatu Ora.

There are no additional charges to providers or patients.

Health assessment criteria and process

To get this health assessment, the person needs to hold a 2022 Special Ukraine Visa and be in New Zealand.

If they are enrolling with you at a general practice, you should complete the usual enrolment process and documentation sighting.

There is currently no requirement from the funder that proof of a visa must be seen or reviewed for the client to access the service.

They only need to tell the nurse or doctor that they have arrived in New Zealand under the 2022 Special Ukraine Visa Policy.

After the health assessment

After completion of the assessment and testing, if there are no abnormal results, the health assessment can be considered completed.

If there are any abnormal results identified from the TB test/s, the Visa holder must be contacted and offered a second free consultation to discuss the test results and management options.

Any other health concerns (eg, diabetes) identified from the first consultation should be followed up through future consultations at a general practice. The Visa holder will have to book these consultations separately and will incur the normal charges to see a nurse or doctor.

Note that Visa holders are eligible for access to publicly funded health and disability services at the same level as New Zealand residents and citizens.

Tuberculosis (TB) screening

TB is considered a priority because Ukraine currently has a high rate of TB.

You must discuss any suspected TB cases with secondary care services, as appropriate, to ensure the right investigations and management are undertaken.

Your local Public Health Service (now part of Te Whatu Ora National Public Health Service) may be able to guide you.

Follow referral processes for your district. Typically, pulmonary TB is managed by respiratory services and extra-pulmonary TB by infectious diseases services, however, this may not apply in all centres.

Children aged under 16 years should be discussed with paediatric services.

All health practitioners in New Zealand should notify the local Public Health Service if TB is suspected (as per Health Act requirements). This can be done based on clinical/laboratory/radiological suspicion. 

Please call your local Public Health Service if TB is suspected or confirmed. The local hospital operator can connect you to them or contacts can be found here.

Referral for chest X-rays

Only people aged 11 years and over need a chest X-ray for this initial TB assessment.

If a child under 11 years of age has had a previous large Mantoux reaction (and is unable to get an IGRA blood test) or past history of TB, they should be discussed with the local paediatrician (this usually warrants a chest X-ray and review by the paediatrician).

Who to contact during the assessment if you have questions

For acute clinical questions, it is best to discuss the Visa holder’s case with an appropriate secondary care clinician.

If there are immunisation queries, please contact the Immunisation Advisory Centre for advice. If you have public health concerns, contact the local Public Health Service.

How to get paid for the services delivered

To access the funding, general practices claim via their primary health organisation (PHO), based on their PHO’s process.

PHOs then invoice Te Whatu Ora monthly for the services provided.

Payment is made by Te Whatu Ora to PHOs within 30 working days of the receipt of the invoice. Payment is not contingent on proof that the client holds the 2022 Special Ukraine Visa.

PHOs are required to provide quarterly reporting on this health initiative to