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Wellington Regional Hospital Plan Gets Go Ahead

1 May 2002

Health Minister Annette King today announced major redevelopments of health services in the Wellington region, including a new regional hospital in Newtown, remodernisation of Kenepuru Hospital, and more health facilities for Kapiti.

Cabinet has agreed to fund much of the redevelopment project, after signing off this week Capital & Coast District Health Board’s “three-site development” business plan.

Ms King said the board’s business case for a new generation of hospital services was comprehensive, and its consultation and planning processes could not be faulted.

“Capital & Coast met all of its Treasury and health requirements in its business plan and I’m thrilled that Cabinet has given this project the green light.

“I want to congratulate the board for its extensive process of consultation and planning. This project is hugely important to the health and wellbeing of people in the greater Wellington region and it was vital that the facilities we agree to build now will serve our citizens well for many years to come.”

Ms King said the need for new hospital facilities in Wellington was first recognised more than 30 years ago. “A new hospital was planned as far back as 1970, but over successive decades the hospital grew in a haphazard fashion, with the underlying need for a coordinated facility overlooked.”

A similar situation arose at Kenepuru Hospital, she said. “While Kenepuru Hospital is a comparatively ‘modern’ hospital, changes in clinical practice, particularly the move to more community-based services, mean the current facilities aren’t able to meet the needs of the local population.”

Population growth in Kapiti signalled the need for new generation facilities, and the building of a ‘one-stop shop’ health centre on the Paraparaumu Hospital site will address that need.

Ms King said the redevelopments will improve health services for Wellington as a whole. “Securing these changes has been fundamental to this Government’s vision of seamless healthcare.

“It’s been a long time coming, but this is a big ticket item and it had to be done right. I’m sure the results will be worth waiting for.”

Ends

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