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Whanganui District Health Board




Whanganui District Health Board was established on 1 January 2001 as the result of the New Zealand Public Health and Disability Act 2000. It is responsible for funding and providing health and disability support services in the Whanganui District.


Objectives of the Whanganui District Health Board (New Zealand Public Health and Disability Act section 22):

Every District Health Board has the following objectives:

  1. To improve, promote, and protect the health of people and communities
  2. To promote the integration of health services, especially primary and secondary health services
  3. To promote effective care or support for those in need of personal health services or disability support services
  4. To promote the inclusion and participation in society and independence of people with disabilities
  5. To reduce health disparities by improving health outcomes for Maori and other population groups
  6. To reduce, with a view to eliminating, health outcome disparities between various population groups within New Zealand by developing and implementing, in consultation with the groups concerned, services and programmes designed to raise their health outcomes to those of other New Zealanders
  7. To exhibit a sense of social responsibility by having regard to the interests of the people to whom it provides, or for whom it arranges the provision of, services
  8. To foster community participation in health improvement and in planning for the provision of services and for significant changes to the provision of services
  9. To uphold the ethical and quality standards commonly expected of providers of services and of public sector organisations
  10. To exhibit a sense of environmental responsibility by having regard to the environmental implications of its operations
  11. To be a good employer.


Functions of the Whanganui District Health Board (New Zealand Public Health and Disability Act section 23):

  1. To ensure the provision of services for its resident population and for other people as specified in its Crown Funding Agreement
  2. To actively investigate, facilitate, sponsor, and develop co-operative and collaborative arrangements with persons in the health and disability sector or in any other sector to improve, promote, and protect the health of people, and to promote the inclusion and participation in society and independence of people with disabilities
  3. To issue relevant information to the resident population, persons in the health and disability sector, and persons in any other sector working to improve, promote, and protect the health of people for the purposes of paragraphs (a) and (b)
  4. To establish and maintain processes to enable Maori to participate in, and contribute to, strategies for Maori health improvement
  5. To continue to foster the development of Maori capacity for participating in the health and disability sector and for providing for the needs of Maori
  6. To provide relevant information to Maori for the purposes of paragraphs (d) and (e)
  7. To regularly investigate, assess, and monitor the health status of its resident population, any factors that the District Health Board believes may adversely affect the health status of that population, and the needs of that population for services
  8. To promote the reduction of adverse social and environmental effects on the health of people and communities
  9. To monitor the delivery and performance of services by it and by persons engaged by it to provide or arrange for the provision of services
  10. To participate, where appropriate, in the training of health professionals and other workers in the health and disability sector
  11. To provide information to the Minister for the purposes of policy development, planning, and monitoring in relation to the performance of the District Health Board and to the health and disability support needs of New Zealanders
  12. To provide, or arrange for the provision of, services on behalf of the Crown or any Crown entity within the meaning of the Public Finance Act
  13. To collaborate with pre-schools and schools within its geographical area on the fostering of health promotion and on disease prevention programmes
  14. To perform any other functions it is for the time being given by or under any enactment, or authorised to perform by the Minister by written notice.


Pursuant to section 26 and clause 39 of Schedule 3 of the New Zealand Public Health and Disability Act 2000, the Board of the Wanganui District Health Board hereby delegates to the Chief Executive Officer of Whanganui District Health Board any function or duty required to be performed, or any power that may be exercised, by the Whanganui District Health Board under the following Acts and Regulations and anything reasonably incidental to the performance of such function or duty or to the exercise of such power, including the ability to further delegate a function, duty or power:

  • Archives Act 1957
  • Charitable Trusts Act 1957
  • Children, Young Persons, and Their Families Act 1989
  • Civil Defence Act 1983
  • Code of Health and Disability Services Consumers Rights
  • Contraception, Sterilisation and Abortion Act 1977
  • Contracts Act 1944
  • Contracts (Privity) Act 1982
  • Criminal Records (Clean Slate) Act 2004
  • Crown Entities Act 2004
  • Disabled Persons Community Welfare Act 1975
  • Disabled Persons Employment Promotion Repeal Act 2007
  • Education Act 1989
  • Electoral Act 1993
  • Employment Relations Act 2000
  • Equal Pay Act 1972
  • Harassment Act 1997
  • Health (Infections and Notifiable Diseases) Regulations 1966
  • Health (Needles and Syringes) Regulations 1998
  • Health (Retention of Information) Regulations 1996
  • Health Act 1956
  • Health and Disability Commissioner Act 1994
  • Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992
  • Health Entitlement Card Regulations 1993
  • Health Information Privacy Code 1994
  • Health Practioners Competency Assurance Act 2003
  • Holidays Act 2003
  • Human Rights Act 1993
  • Immigration Act 1987
  • Income Tax Act 2004
  • Injury Prevention, Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2001
  • Juries Act 1981
  • Land Transport Act 1998
  • Local Government Act 1974
  • Medicines Act 1981
  • Mental Health Commission Act 1998
  • Minimum Wage Act 1983
  • Misuse of Drugs Act 1975
  • New Zealand Bill of Rights Act 1990
  • New Zealand Public Health and Disability Act 2000
  • New Zealand Superannuation Act 2001
  • Official Information Act 1982
  • Ombudsmen Act 1975
  • Parental Leave and Employment Protection Act 1987
  • Privacy Act 1993
  • Rating Powers Act 1988
  • Smoke-free Environments Amendment Act 2003
  • Social Security Act 1964
  • Superannuation Schemes Act 1989
  • Treaty of Waitangi Act 1975
  • Tuberculosis Act 1948
  • Union Representative Education Leave Repeal Act 1992
  • Volunteers Employment Protection Act 1973
  • Wages Protection Act 1983
  • Waitangi Day Act 1976.


Whanganui District Health Board’s District Strategic Plan for 2005–2010 sets out three overarching strategic directions and objectives which are designed to set the path and direction for Whanganui District Health Board, particularly in relation to increasing the focus of population health and the outcomes of services that it funds and provides.

Population Goals and Objectives

Improving health through:
Prevention strategies, access to services, seamless integrated service delivery, inter-sectoral activities and achieving improved health status in target areas.

Reducing inequalities by:
Improving Māori health status in target areas, ensuring access for rural people, reducing avoidable admissions, reducing affordability/cost as a barrier and inter-sectoral activities.

Promoting recovery, wellbeing and independence by:
Ensuring recovery models/approaches, ensuring restoration and independence models/ approaches, inter-sectoral activities and promoting family, whanau, hapu and community wellbeing.

The District Annual Plan 2007/08 provides more detail about our District Strategic Plan (2005–2010).

Building on the strategic directions, the Board has a vision for the 2007/08 year which includes five key intentions:

  • Eliminating the deficit to live within our means
  • Reducing the health inequalities identified in our Health Needs Assessment
  • Managing risk through sustainable models of care
  • Aligning a population approach to purchasing with a patient centred approach to service provision
  • Providing effective governance.

These intentions are expanded upon in the 2007/08 District Annual Plan. The measures and targets within this plan are reflective of both the District Strategic Plan targets and the key intentions for the current year.

Vision Statement

Better health and independence.

Mission Statement

To improve health and independence through a responsive and intergrated health system.


The Whanganui District Health Board confirms that in all its endeavours it will be guided by the following set of values:

Co-operation and Working Collaboratively and Positively with Others

Social equality
Valuing people, respecting diversity, and responsiveness in reducing disparities in health

Being flexible and able to respond to change and new circumstances or initiate change

Growing and learning, empowering people and communities to achieve their goals

Acting honestly and openly, following ethical principles, serving the public interest

Having concern for the consequences of our actions, prioritising and allocating resources in the best interest of the community

Respecting all people, the rule of law, institutions of democracy and the Treaty of Waitangi

Treaty of Waitangi

The Treaty of Waitangi is a cornerstone of good health for whanau, hapu, iwi, and all peoples in the Whanganui region.

The Whanganui District Health Board has a responsibility to recognise and respect the principles of the Treaty of Waitangi in accordance with the legislative framework as agents of the Crown. In doing so, the Whanganui District Health Board acknowledges the special relationship it has with Iwi Māori under the Treaty of Waitangi principles of partnership, participation and protection. This acknowledgement has been formalised in a Memorandum of Understanding with Iwi Māori through its representative group – Hauora a Iwi.

The Whanganui District Health Board is committed to reducing health disparities by improving health outcomes of Māori, and it is this commitment that drives the Board's Māori health plan – Huarahi Oranga.

Whanganui District Health Board continues to strengthening its partnership relationship with Hauora a Iwi; ensuring participation in health needs assessment, planning, prioritisation, service monitoring and evaluation. The Board remains committed to the protection and maintenance of kaupapa Māori – for Māori by Māori health services and supports the growth of Whanau Ora as outlined in the national Māori health strategy – He Korowai Oranga 2001.

The Board will continue to maintain and further develop effective relationships with Māori health providers and work with primary health organisations and 'mainstream' health service providers to advance improvement in Māori health.



Whanganui District Health Board consists of 11 members and is the governance body responsible for the operation of Whanganui District Health Board under the New Zealand Public Health and Disability Act 2000. Seven of the members are elected as part of the triennial local body election process (last held in October 2004) and four are appointed by the Minister of Health by notice in the Gazette. The appointments are for a term of three years and the option of appointing a further member remains at the discretion of the Minister of Health.

The Board has all the powers necessary for the governance of the district health board and has a delegation policy, approved by the Minister of Health, to delegate decisions on management matters to the Chief Executive Officer. The composition of the Board ensures emphasis is placed on local accountability and responsibility for decision making in purchasing and funding of health and disability services. The Board members have diverse skills and experience in order to bring a wide range of thought to bear on policy issues. The Board maintains a register of interests and ensures Board members are aware of their obligations to declare any potential conflicts of interest.

Committees of the Board

The Board has three sub-committees comprising Board members and community representatives which are Statutory Committees under sections 34–36 of the New Zealand Public Health and Disability Act 2000.

In accordance with good business practice standards, a Risk and Audit Committee and an Executive Employment Remuneration Committee have also been established.

The Board also appoints, where necessary, external experts to its statutory committees to ensure that membership has the skills and experience required to undertake their roles. Each committee has its own Terms of Reference and these are reviewed regularly.

In accordance with Schedule Four of the New Zealand Public Health and Disability Act 2000, public notice of the date, time and venue of meetings of the Board and statutory committees is provided. Details of Board and Committee meetings, including agendas, minutes, membership and attendees, are publicly available from public libraries within the Whanganui District Health Board region. Meeting agendas are also available at District Council Offices within the region.

Hospital Advisory Committee (HAC)
The Hospital Advisory Committee has a statutory governance role in monitoring the financial and operational performance of the hospitals the District Health Board owns, as well as assessing strategic issues relating to the provision of hospital services and giving the Board advice and recommendations on that monitoring and assessment.

Community and Public Health Advisory Committee (CPHAC)
The Community and Public Health Advisory Committee has a statutory governance role in providing the Board with advice on the health and disability needs of the resident population and any factors that the committee believes may adversely affect the health status of that population. The committee also provides advice on priorities for use of the health funding provided.

The committee will advise the Board on how services the District Health Board provides or funds, along with the policies it adopts, will maximise the overall health gain for the resident population. The committee will also analyse reports presented to them and make recommendations to the Board. The committee’s advice must be consistent with the New Zealand Health Strategy and the Government’s framework for the overall direction of the health sector.

Disability Support Advisory Committee (DSAC)
The role of the committee is to give the Board advice on the disability support needs of the resident population of the District Health Board and prioritise the use of the disability funding provided. The Disability Support Advisory Committee aims to ensure the kinds of disability support services provided or funded and the policies adopted promote the inclusion and participation in society, and maximise the independence of the people with disabilities within the District Health Board’s resident population.

Risk and Audit Committee
The role of the committee is to monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of risk management and the internal control environment. The committee considers accounting policies, reporting practices, the production of financial statements and monitors the appropriateness of management controls. It considers internal and external audit reports and reviews the adequacy of procedures and internal controls in order to monitor financial risks and major operational risks.

Executive Employment Remuneration Committee
The role of the committee is to monitor the effectiveness, integrity and legal compliance of remuneration programmes including annual review and recommendation of the Chief Executive Officer’s remuneration package.

To ensure the cohesiveness of the governance function, the Chair and Deputy Chair of the Board meet regularly with the chairs of the various committees. In general, all meetings where the Board or any of its Statutory Committees make decisions are open to the public to attend, as observers. Certain discussions may be held without public presence as outlined within the New Zealand Public Health and Disability Act. Whanganui District Health Board's Board and Statutory Committee meetings are held monthly. The Risk and Audit Committee and Executive Employment Remuneration Committee meet quarterly.

Division of Responsibility between the Board and Management

Key to the efficient running of Whanganui District Health Board is that there is a clear division between the roles of the Board and management. The Board concentrates on setting policy, approving strategy, and monitoring progress toward meeting objectives. Management is concerned with implementing policy and strategy. The Board has clearly distinguished these roles by ensuring that the delegation of responsibility and authority to the Chief Executive Officer is concise and complete.

Whanganui District Health Board will continue to provide and maintain high quality and effective corporate governance. The following chart provides a diagrammatic representation of the organisational structure at a Board (Governance) level.

Funding and Planning Division

Government policies and priorities guide the planning and funding of health and disability services for district health boards. Planning and funding is carried out in accordance with national policies, such as the Nationwide Service Framework which sets out the criteria for access to services.

The core activities of the Planning and Funding Division are:

  • determining the health and disability needs of the community
  • operationalising national health and disability strategies in relation to local need
  • funding health and disability services in the district
  • involving the community through consultation and participation
  • identifying service gaps and developing services accordingly
  • undertaking service contracting and monitoring and evaluation of service delivery, including audits.

The Planning and Funding Division of Whanganui District Health Board is also responsible for arranging access to specialist services that are not delivered in the district, referred to as inter-district flows.

The Planning and Funding Division is responsible for planning and funding the following services:

  • Primary care services including primary health organisations
  • Hospital and specialist services
  • Mental health services
  • Disability support services for people aged over 65
  • Māori health services.

In funding these services, Whanganui District Health Board strives to maintain and improve the health of the resident population of the Whanganui district; within the constraints of the funding allocated.

Whanganui District Health Board receives funding from the Government for delivery of these services in accordance with the Service Coverage Schedule. A number of service areas remain the funding responsibility of the Ministry of Health, including:

  • Public Health Services
  • Disability Support Services for under 65s
  • Primary Maternity Services.

Provider Division

Whanganui District Health Board’s Provider Division is responsible for the provision of public hospital, health and disability support services to the community in line with devolved contract agreements and funding.

Services are provided through a range of facilities with the core base at Wanganui Hospital:

  • Three rural health centres (Rangitikei, Taihape, Waimarino)
  • Wanganui Hospital
  • Level 4 secondary hospital providing services for acute and elective, medical, surgical, maternal, paediatric, diagnostics, pharmacy, allied health, assessment, treatment and rehabilitation, community, air ambulance access
  • The Provider Division provides a Level 3/4 Emergency Department, level 1/2 Critical Care Unit, Level 2 Neo Natal Unit
  • Mental health facilities: Acute (Te Awhina), Extended Secure Forensic Services (Stanford House), Intensive Rehabilitation and Extended Care (Delta), Alcohol and Other Drugs Service, and Community Team (Newcombe), Child, Adolescent and Family Services, Community Day Service.

Through a partnership with tertiary and community health providers, the public hospital and health services aim to:

  • Provide the appropriate mix and level of secondary health care at a local level
  • Access tertiary health care for local people
  • Provide a person-centred approach to health care
  • Provide effective and efficient service provision through a continuous quality improvement framework
  • Involve its staff in key decision-making processes to ensure a personal approach and continuous quality framework is achieved.

Other Corporate Shared Functions

There are a number of other functions that are directly responsible to the Chief Executive Officer and provide a service across both the funding and provider divisions. These include Media and Communications and Human Resources.


Categories of Documents

Human Resources
Employee personnel files and other documents relating to employees and personnel services are held by Human Resources. These documents include subjects relating to employment benefits, employment conditions, recruitment, health and welfare, industrial relations, performance assessment, salary and wages, and staff training and development.

Risk Management Covers a variety of general administrative matters relating to risk management activities, Acts and Legislation, Health and Safety activities and Customer Relations.

Information Management and Technology
Provides services relating to health information management as well as patient information. Facilitates statistical reporting and clinical data analysis and maintains user manuals for patient management and nurse rostering systems.

Covers a wide variety of general administrative matters, including management activities, Committees and Board, conferences and general reports, public relations.

Covers financial subjects relating to invoicing, receipting, control and expenditure of public funds. It also includes financial management, audit and inspection, banking arrangements, budgets, asset management, payment of taxes, and payroll.


Central Patient Administration

All information held contributes to the patient’s medical record. Administrative processes are recorded in paper form and filed into the patient’s medical record. Electronic storage of patient information is contained within the patient management system. Additional information is stored by these methods in other off-site locations.

Each department has its own filing system which stores the documents created or used by it.

The Board also accesses and uses information held by the Ministry of Health and its agencies.


The Library has a clinical focus to meet the information needs of the medical, nursing and allied health staff. As well as books and serials, the Library has a reports collection which includes health status reports published over the last 20 years relevant to the Wanganui-Manawatu region. Access to the library is limited to staff and health professionals working in the local communities.


Whanganui District Health Board uses the following manuals for administrative purposes:

  • New Zealand Health Strategy
  • New Zealand Disability Strategy
  • Whanganui District Health Board Strategic Plan
  • Whanganui District Health Board Annual Plan
  • He Korowai Oranga
  • Whakatataka Tuarua
  • Huarahi Oranga
  • Health of Old People Strategy
  • Primary Health Care Strategy
  • Mental Health Strategy
  • New Zealand Palliative Care Strategy
  • Crown Funding Agreements
  • Policy and Procedures Manual
  • Specific department procedures
  • Emergency Management Plan
  • Board and Committee papers.

Health statistical reports are produced by the Information Management Team for internal use and also reporting to the Ministry of Health.

The Whanganui District Health Board website is Contents include a profile of the Whanganui District Health Board and its provider division Good Health Wanganui, press releases, staff vacancies and newsletter.


All requests for official information should be addressed to the Chief Executive Officer at the address below. The requests will be registered and forwarded to the appropriate department for reply.

Whanganui District Health Board

Chief Executive Officer
Heads Road
Private Bag 3003
Telephone: (06) 348 3140
Facsimile: (06) 345 9390