±A - Join Our Community

Learn from the experiences of other expats and make new friends in our disccussion forums and Facebook groups

±A - Cigna

±A - Read Our Guide

The Expat Focus Guide to Moving Abroad contains everything you need to know when planning an international relocation available now, completely free

±A - Compare Quotes and Save

Insurance, FX and international movers

±A - Listen to the Podcast

The Expat Focus podcast features interviews with expats living abroad and service providers meeting their needs subscribe today!

±A - Expert Financial

From our tax, investment and FX partners

±A - ExpatFocus Partners

Expat Focus Partners

Become a Partner. Click Here.


New Zealand - Hospitals

In New Zealand the public hospitals are overseen and funded by the District Health Boards, who are responsible for all the public health provision in their area. The public hospitals have a responsibility to provide a wide range of health care services. These include medical, maternity, emergency and surgical services, but it should be remembered that the range of services that can be provided by any one hospital will be affected by the location of the hospital, the local population and the services that may be offered at other hospitals located in the area.

Most hospitals will offer a variety of inpatient and outpatient clinics in a similar way to hospitals in the UK and the US. The patient is assessed on need and a decision is made on the type of care that they require. In addition,

Every three months the district health board is required to report to the Ministry of Health on all aspects of the performance of each hospital. As a result, a quarterly report is compiled which details the findings. This report allows hospitals and district health boards to be compared.

All the major cities have both public and private hospitals. Auckland has several hospitals to choose from and one of these is the Auckland City Hospital. This is a recent addition to the health services in the area and was opened in 2003. This hospital has combined the services where were provided by the Auckland Hospital, the Green Lane Hospital and the National Women’s Hospital and created a large site. The hospital is also linked with the Starship Children’s Health, which treats more than 100,000 children each year. The Auckland City Hospital is 9 storeys high and is one of the largest public buildings in the city. The new building has been designed to allow a lot of natural light in and is linked to the old Auckland Hospital building by a glass atrium. Internally the building has been decorated with soft but warm colours, to remove the clinical feeling of most hospitals.

Christchurch Hospital is the largest teaching hospital on the South Island of New Zealand. The hospital offers a wide range of services from outpatient care to emergency and surgical services. The hospital is used as a base for many doctors who travel throughout the south island to smaller clinics. This ensures that the same level of care is offered to those who live too far away to attend the hospital. Christchurch hospital treats more than 35,000 inpatients every year and more than 13,000 day patients. There are more than 16,000 operations carried out at the hospital every year and the hospital has managed to significantly reduce waiting times for surgery. There are more than 600 beds at the hospital and the facility works in conjunction with rehabilitation facilities at Burwood and Princess Margaret hospitals to ensure that patients receive excellent after care. Outpatients at the hospital number nearly 20,000 each year. Statistics show that Christchurch Hospital deals with the highest number of emergency cases throughout Australasia. The research carried out at the hospital is usually in liaison with the University of Otago.

Alongside public hospitals such as these there are a number of private hospitals in existence. Southern Cross is an organisation which runs a network of 14 private hospitals covering most of the country and major cities. These hospitals offer a similar range of services as the public hospitals and are considered to offer a good quality of service with the latest technologies. More than 60000 patients a year are treated at one of the Southern Cross hospitals. The organisation dates back to 1979 and also works with other clinics and health centres to ensure that patients receive all the treatment that is available to them.

As English is the main language in the country all medical staff is fluent in English. Most hospitals have Maori speakers too, and there are also some which have staff that speak other languages such as Chinese, French, Hindi and Spanish. Most hospitals also offer sign language and other interpretation services if required, although these will need to be arranged in advance.

Useful Resources

Online Listing of Hospitals in New Zealand

Read more about this country

Expat Health Insurance Partners

Bupa Global

At Bupa we have been helping individuals and families live longer, healthier, happier lives for over 60 years. We are trusted by expats in 190 different countries and have links with healthcare organisations throughout the world. So whether you're moving abroad for a change of career or a change of scene, with our international private health insurance you will always be in safe hands.


Cigna has worked in international health insurance for more than 30 years. Today, Cigna has over 71 million customer relationships around the world. Looking after them is an international workforce of 31,000 people, plus a network of over 1 million hospitals, physicians, clinics and health and wellness specialists worldwide, meaning you have easy access to treatment.