21 May 2020

Doctors say Canterbury DHB's planned new building the worst option

From Morning Report, 6:37 am on 21 May 2020

The Canterbury District Health Board is pushing ahead with a new medical block that its own doctors warn is the worst option available.

DHB minutes show the board was pressured to decide for fear of missing out on central government funding. It has picked what is called the 'reduced cost' option, because just two floors would be fitted out as wards, and three floors as empty shells in the $150 million tower.

The hospital's clinical leaders group pushed for a fourth tower to be built in this same phase, and has warned without it Christchurch's crippling bed shortages will only get worse.

The Association of Salaried Medical Specialists says it's a decision on the cheap that short changes staff.

Its executive director Sarah Dalton spoke to Phil Pennington