NZRGPN Committee

The New Zealand Rural General Practice Network is governed by a committee of regional rural clinicians including General Practitioners, Nurses, Rural Hospital Doctors and Managers. Following the 2019 AGM the new Committee is:

Dr Fiona Bolden

Dr Fiona Bolden is the Network’s Chairperson. Fiona has been a rural GP for 25 years. She initially started in the West Country (UK) and was based in the West Coast of the North Island for 17 years. She served on the Network Committee between 2010 and 2015, returning after a two year gap when she was solely dedicated to her practice in Raglan. She worked for Midlands PHO as a clinical lead in mental health and addictions for four years and has been on the Midlands Rural SLAT since 2012. She was part of the practice team at Raglan which won the inaugural Rural General Practice of the Year Award. Her focus is firmly on rural primary care, with a special interest in mental health. She would like to see equity for all people and sees relationships with rural communities as being a vital part of that. Fiona is now based in Whangamata and continues to work as a rural GP.

Dr James Reid

Dr James Reid is the deputy Chairperson and has previously been the South Island representative on the Committee.

He is a rural hospital doctor and Senior Medical Officer at Lakes District Hospital in Queenstown (Southland DHB), a Fellow of the Division of Rural Hospital Medicine (FDRHMNZ) and is involved with the administration of the Rural Hospital Training Scheme as Chair of their Board of Studies. James has an MBCHB from Otago 1988, DpObst 1990. He was previously a General Practitioner in Wellington.

Ray Anton

Ray Anton, Treasurer, holds a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering and Operations Research from the University of California at Berkeley and a Masters Degree in Management from the University of Redlands. He has been CEO of Clutha Health First since 2001, a rural hospital and larger General Practice. He has been a member of the Network Committee as treasurer, and he is also the Chairman of the Rural Hospital Network. His first six years in New Zealand were at the Otago DHB as the strategic planner and quality manager and previous to that he worked as a consultant for KPMG Peat Marwick in the United States, Middle East and New Zealand.

Rhoena Davis

Northland Nurse Practitioner Rhoena Davis is the Secretary and is the former Northern North Island representative. Ko Nga Puhi Nui Tonu te Iwi Rangatira. Ko Ngatokimatawhaurua te Waka. Ko Hokianga me Rangaumu nga Moana. Ko Tamatea raua ko Puwheke nga Maunga. Ko Te Rarawa raua ko Ngati Kahu nga Hapu. Ko Tomoniko Kanara raua ko Kawana Matenga tona Tupuna Matua.
Rhoena began her career in rural nursing in 1993 after graduating from Northland Polytechnic as a comprehensive Registered Nurse. Her first job was at the Bay of Islands Hospital in general rural nursing including paediatrics, coronary care and acute emergency care. She later undertook a role within Public Health working within small rural communities.
She has worked with the Ngati Hine Health Trust as a mobile rural nurse and later moved onto a clinical management role. In 2010 Rhoena was endorsed by New Zealand Nursing Council as a Nurse Practitioner and has subsequently maintained her rural nursing perspective within the Ngati Hine Health Trust, Te Kohanga Whakaora (Kaitaia) and the Whangaroa Health Services. Each organisation has provided a diverse arena for learning, and growing as a rural advanced nurse.
Rhoena also has representation on the New Zealand College of Nurses (Fellow); Te Tai Tokerau Nursing Leaders Group (Nurse Practitioners); Northland Rheumatic Fever Group; Northern General Practice Emergency Service Steering Group; the New Zealand Rural Nurses working group; and as a Nurse Practitioner mentor she has been part of nine aspiring nurses’ pathways to becoming Nurse Practitioners

Dr Kyle Simon Eggleton

Dr Kyle Eggleton is the North Island Representative on the Network Committee. He is the Rural Director of the Auckland University Medical School, the Year 6 General Practice Course Director and the GP academic with responsibilities for Year 5 and 6 placements in Northland. He works part time in the Department of General Practice and Primary Health Care and part time as the medical officer for Ki A Ora Ngātiwai, an iwi health provider based in Northland, where he undertakes rural outreach clinics. His research interests broadly coalesce around the theme of quality of primary care. He is particularly interested in rural health, equity, access issues and participatory action research. His PhD explored the concept of measuring quality of iwi health providers and utilised a Kaupapa Māori aligned methodology. Kyle is a member of the Health Practitioners Disciplinary Tribunal, Elected member Northland District Health Board, Chairperson Bream Bay Community Support Trust, Board member Northland Faculty RNZCGP, Member of the Medicine Adverse Reactions Committee.

Rhonda Johnson

Rhonda Johnson, South Island Representative, is the former Network Committee interim Secretary and Rural Nurses New Zealand (RNNZ) representative. Rhonda is a registered nurse originally from Auckland, now residing in Central Otago since 2002. Rhonda has been nursing since 1996 with her rural journey beginning in 2002 at Dunstan Hospital in Central Otago where she was Charge Nurse for 11 years. Rhonda moved to consultancy in 2017 as a Clinical Health Planner assisting a number of DHB’s and the MoH with health service and facility planning projects where she brings her rural knowledge and experience.  She enjoys the diversity and challenge that rurality brings and is committed to supporting NZ rural health services. Rhonda completed a PG Certificate in Intensive Care Nursing in 2005 and later a PG Diploma in Advanced Nursing (merit) through the Rural Institute of Health and Auckland University in 2008. Rhonda is a member of the Rural Nurses NZ executive who  aims to increase the rural nurse profile in NZ and facilitate better connections to develop initiatives key to rural nurses in all contexts.

Dr Grahame Jelley

Dr Grahame Jelley is the Northern North Island representative on the Network Committee. Grahame is a General Practitioner at The Doctors KeriKeri and is also employed by Mahitahi Hauora Primary Health entity  as a Rural Clinical Advisor and Medical Director for Locality 1 (Mama,Pepi,Tamariki)

After completing his secondary education in Zimbabwe, Grahame trained at the University of Cape Town in South Africa in 1983. He has worked as a rural GP for 36 years in the mission hospital service, regional rural hospital service in South Africa, large corporate medical services and in solo General Practice in Zimbabwe.
Grahame arrived in New Zealand in 2000 commencing as a DHB employed General Practitioner attached to Buller Hospital on the West Coast of the South Island. This included work as a GP and as a hospital doctor. In 2004 Grahame moved to the Bay of Plenty and for 12 years practiced there at locations including Ohope, Whakatane, Opotiki and te Kaha and as a volunteer GP in the Cook Islands at Aitutaki Base Hospital. Grahame worked as a solo practitioner and then as a corporate shareholder contractor GP for Radius Whakatane. He was actively involved with the Eastern Bay of Plenty PHO and Primary Health Alliance and was employed as a Clinical Advisor to Planning and Funding with the Bay of Plenty DHB.

Grahame Moved to the Bay of Islands in 2015 and has worked part time as a GP and with the PHO’s as a clinical leader and Medical Director. Grahame has held recent positions as Chairperson of the RNZCGP Rural Chapter and a board member of Te tai Tokerau PHO prior to its dissolution and incorporation into Mahitahi Hauora. Grahame is a member of the Primary Care Advisory Group of New Zealand Telehealth Leadership Group and a member of the committee of Northland Faculty of the RNZCGP.

Dr Rory Miller

Dr Rory Miller is the Eastern Middle North Island Representative. He is a rural hospital doctor and GP based in Whangamata. He currently works half-time at Thames Hospital and has worked in General Practice in Whangamata. The other half he works as a rural-based academic for the rural post-graduate programme, Rural section, Dept. GPRH, University of Otago. He has research interests in exploring inequity, especially with regards to cardiovascular health and is doing his PhD in this area. Rory and his partner and two children like to ride bikes, and they also have a brown dog and seven chickens.

Kristi Daniel

Kristi Daniel is the Western Middle North Island Representative on the Committee. She is a Practice Nurse and PRIME trained currently working at Raglan Medical. Kristi completed her nursing at University of Portland Oregon. After several years in the intensive care unit at Waikato, the transition to Practice nursing has brought a passion for community health. She has lived rurally in Raglan for over 13 years and enjoys the outdoors at her doorstep. Raglan has a very diverse community bringing lots of benefits and challenges to health care.

Judith Macdonald

Judith MacDonald is the committee’s Southern North Island representative replacing long-standing member Kim Gosman. Jude was born and raised in the rural community of Taihape and returned following her education and marriage to a local working as a Registered Nurse establishing the Taihape District Nursing service, working as Charge Nurse Taihape Hospital and then moving into management roles which covered the three rural hospitals of the Whanganui District Health Board; Waimarino, Taihape and Marton.

For the past fourteen years she has been the CE of Whanganui Regional Health Network which operates as a PHO as well as owning and operating four integrated health service clinics including two rural, located in the Ruapehu and Taihape districts. She has been a strong supporter of rural health services (subsidiary clinics and private rural practices in Marton and Bulls) and championed the needs of rural communities during the nine years she has been an elected Whanganui District Health Board member. Currently she is a Director of the two rural general practice/ primary care subsidiary clinics and is a board member of Whanganui Age Concern. Within her CE role she is involved in ‘future proofing primary care locally’ and this includes procurement, design and rethink of service facilities and services both within our rural sites and within our provincial city. She is passionate about working with communities and Iwi to create true partnerships that produce improved health and wellbeing for all our people.

Dr James MacMillan-Armstrong

Dr James MacMillan-Armstrong is the Southern South Island Representative. He has been a GP in Te Anau since 2011. His Kiwi wife, Sally, lured him to New Zealand in 2010 from the UK where he had done his medical and early post-graduate training at Newcastle University and in the North of England. That was following a BSc in Physiology in Aberdeen in the late 1990s.

They now have two children and multiple animals of various sizes and degrees of affection which keep them occupied during any down time, but they try their hardest to continue to explore the Fiordland and surrounding hills through tramps and high country expeditions.

James has run the Kepler now seven times and he thoroughly enjoys this and other physically demanding runs, treks and challenges, such as running the Dusky Track or expeditions through the Murchison Mountains.

For James, practicing medicine in Fiordland is both challenging and rewarding. There are the demands of medicine in small, rural town New Zealand with a high on-call burden, familiarity with patients both in and out of clinic, distance form base hospital, access to services. But also the pleasure of knowing patients extremely well, providing the best quality care they can offer, striving for a great work environment and forging meaningful relationships with other local service providers. However, like so many rural practices they often feel disadvantaged by their rurality in any number of ways.

Acknowledging these issues James wanted to continue to work towards reducing these barriers to care for the sake of our patients and the sustainability of general practice in New Zealand.

Gemma Hutton

Gemma Hutton is the Northern South Island representative on the Committee. She is employed as a Nurse Practitioner at the Twizel Medical Centre. Coming from a rural background, Gemma enjoys the lifestyle and recreational activities that are available in such areas. She is passionate about rural health care and the provision of services to these communities. She is involved in organising healthy lifestyle and weight-loss groups in her community, as well as supporting the local St John’s volunteers with training in her own time.

Wilson Mitchell

Student Sub-Committee Co-Chairperson

Wilson is a fifth-year medical student at the University of Otago based at Wairau Hospital, currently undertaking the Rural Medical Immersion Programme. He is one of two co-chairs on the Students of Rural Health Aotearoa (SoRHA) Council and attends as a student representative on the New Zealand Rural General Practice Network Committee.  Wilson is the current President of the Matagouri Rural Health Club based in Dunedin who has been heavily involved in the coordination of numerous talks and events that develop and promote rural healthcare as a rewarding career option for students across all of the health professional programmes. For the last four years, he has also been heavily involved in organising rural school and community trips to regions all over the South Island with the intent to inspire the next generations of rural health professionals at the grassroots level.  Growing up on a farm just out of Outram, Wilson developed a passion for the wellbeing of rural communities from a young age, acknowledging healthcare to be an integral part of this. Having been brought up, schooled and working rurally, he genuinely cares about how these communities function, network and strive to ensure equitable access to quality health and wellbeing services for their people.

Dr Grant Davidson

Grant Davidson joined the New Zealand General Practice as its Chief Executive in May 2020 – inheriting an empty office and a team working from home as a result of Covid-19.

Grant joins the New Zealand Rural General Practice at a pivotal time for the health sector, and for rural healthcare professionals in particular.

Grant has a proven track record in building high-performing teams and trusted networks across stakeholders, including the public and commercial sectors, tangata whenua and community-based organisations. He is a values-based leader and is trained in the facilitation of a range of leadership, performance and organisational development models.

Grant has led significant organisational transformations, is skilled at delivering results within complex operating environments and has proven abilities in financial management.

Grant joins the NZRGPN from his previous role as the Chief Executive of Skills Active Aotearoa, the industry training organisation providing on-job training for over 6,000 trainees per year in sport, fitness, recreation, snowsports and performing arts.

Over Grant’s career, he has held a range of chief executive and senior leadership roles, has worked as a university lecturer and has set up and run his own businesses, including a private consultancy in safety and risk management.

Grant has extensive governance experience across the sports, outdoor education, research, industry training, and safety and audit sectors. He holds certification as a company director from the New Zealand Institute of Directors.

Grant has been a Fulbright Scholar, holds a PhD from Waikato University’s School of Management Studies, a Master Degree in Education from the University of Minnesota and a BSc from Auckland University. He has been awarded the Queen’s Commemorative Medal for services to outdoor education.

He is a keen outdoorsman with a passion for rockclimbing. Grant lives in Brooklyn, Wellington.

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