Planned Care Taskforce

The Planned Care taskforce will centrally coordinate commissioning and engage with clinicians on prioritisation of activity for planned care delivery over the next 12-24 months.

Read the latest Planned Care Taskforce Update here.

This Taskforce is chaired by an experienced senior leader, Mr Andrew Connolly, to support the taskforce and work with the sector to make sure implementation is consistent across the country. This includes working with private hospital capacity in a more coordinated way, with subspecialty groups to advise on prioritisation and primary and community provider networks to add capacity to specialist assessment pathways.

This Taskforce will be established until national and regional roles and functions are in place to take responsibility and accountability for delivery.

Members of the Taskforce were announced on 6 May 2022. They are:

  • Mr Andrew Connolly (Chair), Chief Medical Officer at Counties Manukau District Health Board 
  • Professor Diana Sarfati, the chief executive of Te Aho o te Kahu, the Cancer Control Agency
  • Wellington GP Dr Jeff Lowe, who chairs General Practice New Zealand
  • Auckland District Health Board funding and development manager Jo Brown
  • Canterbury District Health Board chief operating officer for networks, Dan Coward
  • Canterbury District Health Board director of nursing Brenda Close
  • Bay of Plenty DHB clinical director Linda Chalmers
  • Northland DHB general and oncoplastic breast surgeon Maxine Ronald
  • Dr Kiki Maoate, a paediatric surgeon at Canterbury DHB
  • Dr Rawiri Jansen, the clinical director of the National Hauora Coalition. Dr Jansen has been appointed to the taskforce by the Interim Māori Health Authority.

The team has already met a number of times and provided initial advice to Te Whatu Ora – Health New Zealand and the Māori Health Authority about short-term measures that can be taken to immediately address long waiting lists, and the time people are having to wait for planned care and surgeries.

It will continue to investigate what needs to be done to strategically manage planned care over the long term, with an expectation that a full review and stock-take will be undertaken, with recommendations, by September 2022.

Workforce Taskforce

The Workforce taskforce, with a National Lead, will agree the key priority interventions for immediate workforce expansions where service failure is at risk if the workforce is not supported in the short term.

This Taskforce will work with employee organisations, relevant union partners, tertiary training institutions and professional regulators to accelerate the need for trained workforce in priority service areas while national strategic workforce initiatives are being implemented.

On 1 August 2022, the Minister of Health presented a number of initiatives to relieve some of these workforce pressures in the short-term by speeding up the supply and retention of our vital healthcare workforce. The initiatives were recommendations from Te Whatu Ora’s Workforce Taskforce.

Read more about these initiatives.

Immunisation Taskforce

The Immunisation taskforce aims to increase the uptake of seasonal flu and childhood immunisations. This will provide
added protection to the system during winter.

This Taskforce aims to work with existing ways of working established by the COVID-19 response, sustaining and
continuing those models effective for COVID-19 vaccination to increase influenza, childhood immunisations and MMR vaccine uptake among young people. This includes community-based provider models that have reached out to Maori, Pacific, rural and other population groups.