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District Health Boards Report Deficit Increase

23 November 2006

District Health Boards Report Deficit Increase

The combined operating deficit of New Zealand's 21 district health boards (DHBs) was $8.2 million for the September 2006 quarter, Statistics New Zealand said today. This quarter's deficit was larger compared with both the $2.7 million deficit recorded in the June 2006 quarter and the $4.9 million deficit in the September 2005 quarter.

Total DHB expenditure rose by $53.6 million (2.2 percent) to $2,456.1 million between the June 2006 and September 2006 quarters. The two major components of expenditure for the most recent quarter were the direct provision of public hospital and health services (HHS), at $1,399.7 million, and the purchase of medical services from non-government providers and inter-DHB services, at $1,044.2 million.

The total operating expenses of the HHS providers were 1.4 percent lower than in the June 2006 quarter, but 8.7 percent higher when compared with the September 2005 quarter. The key expense item, employee costs, was down 2.5 percent (to $883.5 million) this quarter.

Total DHB revenue rose $48.1 million (2.0 percent) to $2,447.9 million in the September 2006 quarter. The major component of revenue, funding from the Ministry of Health, increased by $53.0 million to $2,052.3 million.

Brian Pink

Government Statistician

ENDS

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