Since April this year, the Canterbury District Health Board and Ministry of Health have been participating in a ‘Way Forward’ process to discuss the health requirements for Canterbury.
The process has included a number of face-to-face conversations including a daylong series of meetings held in Christchurch last week between the Director-General of Health, Dr Ashley Bloomfield, and senior Canterbury DHB leaders.
“The post-earthquake health challenges still affecting the Canterbury region are complex, substantial and far-reaching,” says Dr Bloomfield. “Collectively we now have a greater understanding of the root causes and drivers of health challenges for the region, and how these may differ from other parts of the country.
“This has been a constructive process, and I am confident we now have a stronger, more cohesive platform to move forward on,” says Dr Bloomfield.
Canterbury DHB chair, Dr John Wood, says apart from the much-improved lines of communication and commitment from everyone to nurture respectful relationships, a tangible positive outcome of the ‘Way Forward’ process is the commitment by all parties to progress the urgent work to confirm the capital requirements for the remainder of the Christchurch Hospital Campus.
“This is important to resolve, as despite urgent repairs being carried out after the series of earthquakes in 2010 and 2011 there is still significant earthquake damage to DHB buildings and infrastructure.
“After the quakes Canterbury DHB lost 47,000 square metres of building space which had to be demolished and 14,000 rooms were damaged. Our current facility constraints remain an impediment.
“Working collaboratively to develop this business case is a substantive piece of work with a tight time-frame and I’m pleased that all parties have committed to progress this with urgency.
“It will be completed by April 2019 in time to be considered by the Capital Investment Committee. This united effort will provide a clear view of the significant capital required to redevelop the remainder of the Christchurch Hospital site. This will allow us to complete much-needed repairs and redevelopment. We envisage that the redevelopment work will start once the new $483 million Acute Services Building is complete,” says Dr Wood.
Further information can be found on the Ministry of Health's website: