Private hospitals want the government to consider using them to carry out non-urgent surgeries, to take pressure off the public system.
The Private Surgical Hospitals Association said there was growing demand for elective surgery, and waiting times were increasing.
President Richard Whitney said most of the surgeries could be done for the same cost at a private hospital.
There were two ways it could work.
"One is where a DHB may choose to outsource elective surgery - they would effectively pay the private sector to undertake surgery...
"The second option is the public sector may look towards leasing a theatre and that provides them pretty much with the theatre capacity as it would within their own facility."
Mr Whitney said in most areas District Health Boards would already have some interaction with private providers.