On the 1st of July, we moved to a new national health system. At first it will look and feel the same, but having a national system means that changes can be made over time, to achieve better outcomes for our health.

What will be different?

Initially, the healthcare services you receive will look and feel the same, but with a different name. However, behind the scenes, a number of changes are already being made and while some of this will take time, you will see a few things change.

The new health system has been designed to enable a whole-of-country view to planning and delivering services, helping it to be efficient and consistent everywhere.  A healthcare system that is nationally planned, regionally delivered and locally tailored will address things like surgical waiting lists. It also means that when it comes to health services, where you live will matter less than what you need.

All of the health reform changes are designed to reduce the pressure on specialist and hospital care.

Te Whatu Ora - Health New Zealand has national teams working to coordinate healthcare across the country. One of these teams is focused on reducing how long people have to wait for planned healthcare and surgeries.

Digital technology will be used in more and better ways, to provide people with services in their homes, hapori and local communities. Technology will also help healthcare workers to better understand and support their patients. For example, if you need to access healthcare when you’re away from your usual provider, whoever you see will have access to all your medical records, like your health history, what medications you use or an allergy to penicillin.

More money can be spent on delivering healthcare as the cost of running the system will be managed nationally once, rather than regionally many times.

Read more about the reforms.

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