Council committed to future of Oamaru Hospital

Published on 14 May 2024

Oamaru Hospital limestone building.jpg

Last Tuesday Councillors were updated on the progress of negotiations regarding the future of the Oamaru Hospital.

This took place in a Public Excluded Meeting due to ongoing negotiations being of a confidential nature.

Council remains committed to ensuring the preservation of the Oamaru Hospital and its services, and to collaborating with Health New Zealand Te Whatu Ora on the future of health services in the Waitaki district.

Council has been offered assurances by the Chief Executive of Health NZ, Fepuleai Margie Apa, that there are no plans to close Oamaru Hospital or withdraw any current services in an April letter to Mayor Gary Kircher.

There will also be opportunities for Council to work with Health NZ on the Te Waka Hauora o Waitaki Health Futures project, about how all publicly funded health services (including hospital and specialist services) in the Waitaki district can work together.

Mayor Kircher says: “Negotiations are ongoing, and as a result remain confidential. However, Councillors have been extremely clear that their immediate priorities are ensuring Oamaru has a hospital, and the services our community rely upon. We also are committed to ensuring that the Ratepayer is no worse off from the transfer of services.

We know that health services are not meeting the needs of all our community so, in the longer term, we are committed to ensuring a local health system that delivers for everyone in Waitaki and ensures better health outcomes. We look forward to sharing more information with the community when we can.”