30 Jan 2014

Surgeons want new cash to last longer

7:40 am on 30 January 2014

Orthopaedic surgeons say a one-off, $10 million cash injection for elective surgery this year would be better as part of on-going funding built into the health budget.

Health Minister Tony Ryall says the extra funding announced on Wednesday will mean more than 1800 extra operations for knee and hip joint replacements, cataracts, and ear, nose and throat operations.

The Orthopaedic Association says the extra money is welcome, but few hospitals can increase capacity for one-off cash injections and a better way of planning would be to make the money available over a longer period of time.

Mr Ryall said the extra operations will mostly be carried out by DHBs with spare capacity, such as Canterbury, Hawke's Bay and Waikato.

He said he will announce how much money will go to each district health board in the next few days.