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Nominations for district health board (DHB) elections open

August 1, 2013

Nominations for this year's district health board (DHB) elections open

Nominations for this year's district health board (DHB) elections are open till noon on Friday August 16.

Forms and information packs for those considering standing are available from the Canterbury District Health Board's (CDHB) Electoral Officer at Ltd, Phone 0508 440 027 or email

The elections, carried out every three years, are done by postal vote, closing at 12 noon on Saturday, October 12, 2013.

The DHB elections are for seven positions, elected on an "at large" basis by enrolled residents of the Canterbury DHB area (extending from Kaikoura to Ashburton), meaning that they represent the entire population.

Following the election, the Minister of Health Tony Ryall may appoint a further four members, making a total of 11 members.

The CDHB is responsible to the Minister of Health for the overall performance and management of the DHB. The Board’s core responsibility is to set strategic direction and policy that is consistent with government objectives, improves health outcomes and ensures sustainable service provision. The Board also ensures compliance with legal and accountability requirements and maintains relationships with the Minister of Health, Parliament and the Canterbury community.

While responsibility for overall performance rests with the Board, operational and management matters have been delegated to the Chief Executive, who is supported by an Executive Management Team.

DHBs are the governing bodies responsible for overseeing the delivery of health and disability services in their districts. Each board has up to 11 members, up to six of whom, including the chair and deputy chair, are appointed by the Minister of Health. Other members are publically elected every three years at the time of the local government elections.

The Public Health and Disability Act 2000 is quite clear about the role of the Board.
• The Board is required, under the Act, to appoint a Chief Executive to take responsibility for management matters
• Board members do not manage the DHB
• The Board does not have a role in employment decisions beyond the appointment of the Chief Executive and by law cannot interfere in matters relating to individual employees.
• Boards fees are set by the Minister of Health and are publicly available on the Ministry of Health website

Board meetings are open to the public, who are able to observe but not participate in meetings. The rules around when the public is able to attend DHB Board meetings are similar to those that apply to Local Government meetings. Although some parts of the meeting may need to be closed to the public, this occurs only for specific reasons.


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