New $21m health facility to support the Buller community


A new integrated health facility built to improve and future-proof care for the Buller community was officially opened by Minister of Health Dr Ayesha Verrall this afternoon.

The new facility, Te Rau Kawakawa, has been purpose built to house a range of services including general practice, acute care services, primary birthing and post-natal care, palliative care, urgent care and child dental services.

“It was great to see for myself how this incredible new facility and its staff will continue to play a key part in the lives of West Coast patients and their whānau,” said Dr Ayesha Verrall.

“Te Rau Kawakawa was designed to support an integrated model of care. Patients are set to benefit the most from this collaborative approach to health care services.

“Te Rau Kawakawa is one of 104 healthcare infrastructure projects worth a total of $6.8 billion that Te Whatu Ora is currently planning and delivering around the motu.

“The Government is committed to improving facilities for patients and staff, and this facility is a fantastic example of healthcare facilities on the West Coast that will serve the community for years to come.”

The former West Coast DHB received $21 million in Government funding to build the new single-storey brick building, which has a total of 12 beds inclusive of 7-overnight beds plus a birthing room. Community services like District Nursing and Home & Community Support Services, Hauora Māori service, mental health service as well as drug and alcohol services will also be located within the new facility.

Radiology and laboratory (phlebotomy) support services will be on the same site.

Each month the team at Buller Health provide treatment and care in a range of settings from primary to community care, outpatients and acute care services – it’s a busy place: in total there are more than 8,000 appointments or overnight stays every month, where dedicated staff provide professional care to Coasters.

“This facility represents an exciting time for Buller Health and Te Whatu Ora. The rural generalist model of care is paying dividends across the West Coast, the workforce has increased and better facilities significantly improve our ability to support primary care.” said Ayesha Verrall.

“I am confident that the significant investment made in Te Rau Kawakawa will not only benefit the Buller community, it will also help improve access to healthcare across the West Coast region.”