DHB chief honoured by doctors for quake response

6:28 pm on 29 November 2011

Doctors have given the chief executive of the Canterbury District Health Board their highest award for his response to the February earthquake.

Some 182 people died in the devastating 6.3-magnitude quake on 22 February this year and many were injured after being trapped in buildings or hit by falling masonry and other objects.

The Medical Association gave David Meates the Chair's Award at a function in Wellington on Tuesday evening, saying he showed exemplary leadership during uncertainty and upheaval, including for his own staff.

Association chair Paul Ockelford says Mr Meates mobilised a huge response effort to the quake across the Canterbury health sector.

He says Mr Meates' leadership was based on his belief that the best healthcare systems are based on genuine collaboration and partnership.

Dr Ockelford says Mr Meates and his DHB succeeded in developing and implementing effective and robust recovery plans in a crisis.

He says it is also a testament to the calibre of the doctors, nurses and others who showed dedication and professionalism when they were affected by the quake.