CHEAT SHEET: HOW NZ'S HEALTH SYSTEM IS CHANGING

Updated: Jul 20

Article source: Hannah Martin, Stuff

After becoming “too complicated for a small nation”, Aotearoa’s health system will be overhauled in just a couple of weeks’ time, and the 20 district health boards will be scrapped. So what’s actually changing come July 1?



The DHBs are gone. From July, the 21-year-old health structure will be disestablished, and the functions of the district health boards will merge into Health New Zealand – which will lead the day-to-day running of the system for the whole country.


Why? Well, officials say DHBs worked well for many years, but have become too complex and fragmented (the smallest, West Coast DHB serves 32,550 people, while Waitematā DHB’s population is 628,770) over time. Care often came down to postcode.


Under the new model, Health NZ will manage all health services, including hospital and specialist services, and primary and community care.