Counties Manukau DHB gets $211m to improve hospital facilities

After a review revealed the poor conditions of the country’s operating theatres, the prime minister Jacinda has announced extra support for Counties Manukau DHB.

Watch the PM making the announcement here:

The government is giving $211 million to build hospital operating theatres and improve other facilities in South Auckland.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced the funding at the Manukau Super Clinic today.

Middlemore Hospital has been dealing with long waiting lists and cramped facilities, made worse by the pressures of the Whakaari/White Island eruption and Covid-19.

Counties Manukau DHB said the money would mainly be used to build four operating theatres, to increase CT and MRI scanning, and for kidney, breast and eye services.

Much of that will be at its Manukau Health Park which focuses mostly on elective and outpatient work.

DHB chair Vui Mark Gosche said the extra space would make Middlemore less crowded and help to clear elective surgery waiting lists.

“We are also building on the lessons learned from Covid-19. Expanding new ways of working, including telehealth and virtual appointments, meant we were able to maintain as many of our outpatient services from the Manukau Health Park as possible, but we estimate we now have a large number of surgical cases that need to be rescheduled,” he said.

“Having the additional services available in the future will lessen the impact on our community when such events happen. This funding will make an enormous difference to the level and quality of service we provide.”

A stocktake of the country’s hospitals has revealed many intensive care units, operating theatres and emergency departments are in “poor or very poor” shape.

The stocktake was sparked by Middlemore Hospital’s infrastructure woes revealed by RNZ in 2018.

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