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Horowhenua Hospital Development Passes Key Hurdle

Joint statement Ministry of Health - MidCentral DHB|

27 April 2004

Horowhenua Hospital Development Passes Key Hurdle

In a joint statement MidCentral DHB and the Ministry of Health today announced that the National Capital Committee (NCC) has recommended that funding be reserved for the redevelopment of Horowhenua Hospital.

This is an essential step on the path to full approval. I congratulate the Horowhenua community and the staff of MidCentral DHB who have worked very hard to get to this key point, Ministry Deputy Director-General Gordon Davies said.

Mr Davies said that the NCC still required a number of areas to be addressed by the Board, but that good progress is being made.

At its 31 March 2004 meeting the National Capital Committee was impressed with the new design that was developed following the work of the independent consultant Len Dockrill. This new design achieves the full integration of Primary Care services with hospital-based services.

What is proposed is a new $14 million hospital that links all health services closely together. The new design reflects the integrated health care of the future, not the silos of the past, said MidCentral DHB Chief Executive Murray Georgel.

For a new facility to deliver value to the Horowhenua it is essential that when patients visit the hospital in future that they receive the right care from the right health professional. People should not have to visit different practitioners all over a spread-out hospital, or all over town.

For example, GPs will need to be located at any new hospital. This means that we must secure agreement with GPs and other Primary Care providers to locate at a new hospital before full Ministerial approval for the new development can be given, Mr Georgel said.

Mr Georgel said that, MidCentral DHB is very hopeful that during the next three months GPs and other Primary Providers will agree to locate at the proposed new hospital. That is a key requirement to enable the Minister of Health to be able to consider full and final approval.

Reserved funding gives considerable certainty to the community, Primary Care providers and MidCentral DHB that if they agree to the delivery of integrated, coordinated health services from a new purpose build facility, and meet some other requirements, that the Ministry will be able to recommend that the Minister gives full approval and funding, said Mr Davies.

Mr Georgel said The NCC recommendation to reserve funding gives us confidence that the new design of the proposed facility is a good design that will achieve high quality and sustainable health care for the Horowhenua community.

I believe we now have a proposal and a hospital design that the community can trust to deliver the quality care that we all expect. What is now required is for all the necessary health professionals to sign up to the new direction planned for health services," Mr Georgel said.

In addition to securing sign-off from Primary Care providers MidCentral DHB has been requested to address a number of other matters in order to secure full Government approval. These include providing further information on expected improved health outcomes, financial planning, implementation plans, and change management processes.

Both the Ministry and MidCentral DHB are confident that these matters will be promptly and successfully addressed by the DHB, said Mr Davies and Mr Georgel.

ENDS


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