Regional Women's Health Service proposal submission period now closed
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Whanganui and MidCentral District Health Board chief executives Julie Patterson (WDHB) and Murray Georgel (MDHB) are pleased with the number of individuals, groups and organisations who invested time and effort to lodge submissions on the Regional Women’s Health Service proposal.
 
Mrs Patterson said 4061 valid submissions were received during the eight-week public engagement period which closed at 4pm yesterday. Of that number, 3729 were pre-printed postcards distributed by the New Zealand College of Midwives.
 
In addition to individual submissions, feedback was also received from 36 public and stakeholder meetings held throughout the Whanganui district as well as those held in the MidCentral district.
 
Whanganui and MidCentral DHB staff are now analysing the submissions for both boards to consider and decide on at their June meetings. A report summarising all feedback will be provided to the boards. 
 
“It is heartening to see the level of interest that Whanganui residents have shown in the service proposal,” Mrs Patterson said.
 
 “The issues we’ve brought to our communities are challenging, particularly the proposed move to a single, after-hours medical specialist roster based at Palmerston North Hospital.
 
“A full analysis of submissions identifying common themes will be presented to both boards when they meet in June. Neither the WDHB or MDHB will discuss the analysis and its content until the boards have received and considered this information.”
 
Mrs Patterson confirmed that WDHB board members will hear 16 scheduled verbal submissions in the Wanganui District Council Chambers from 9.30 to 4.30pm on Monday 21 May.
 
“On behalf of both boards, I thank all those people who have read the proposal, attended the meetings, debated the issues with us, offered solutions and taken the time to put in a submission. We are in no doubt how important this issue is to our community. The feedback we’ve received will help shape our regional women’s health services into the future.”