Update: 10 November, 2021

Planned care delivery in 2021/22 has been affected significantly by the recent COVID-19 outbreak.

When the country moved to Alert Level 4 on 18 August 2021, many DHBs initially reduced planned care delivery, with priority given to urgent/time sensitive care.

Subsequently, waiting lists have increased since August.

However, DHBs have noted that lessons have been learnt and, unlike the initial COVID-19 lockdown in 2020, less urgent Planned Care delivery has not necessarily been entirely ceased.

Where possible, some less urgent treatment has been maintained.


As a person moves through the Planned Care system there are a number of key decision points – from when the person is first referred for a specialist assessment, through assessment, diagnostic tests, treatment and follow up, to the point when the person returns to the care of their GP (or primary care provider).

The ESPIs are a suite of indicators that monitor waiting times for elective surgery against expectations.

This includes how well DHBs are managing waiting times for patients, and whether they are following processes that support good patient communication and prioritisation.

The Elective Services Patient Flow Indicators Web Tool provides a summary view of the results for each of the ESPIs nationally or for each DHB over the last 12 months.

It also shows national and DHB ESPI performance by specialty.

The ESPI results and technical definitions of the measures are available to view and download from the Elective Services Patient Flow Indicators Web Tool.

This tool replaces the previously published excel and PDF tables.