The lives of Cantabrians changed forever after 4 September david meates2010 and even more so after 22 February 2011.

More than three years after that first earthquake struck Canterbury in September 2010, the Canterbury Health System is just scratching the surface of repairs, demolition and redevelopments planned. It is perhaps timely to reflect on the signficant projects underway which are affecting all staff and people using our services in different ways.

The landscape is altering on a weekly basis as damaged buildings start to come down, while repairs and redevelopment work are starting to take shape in other areas.

Earthquake repairs to Canterbury DHB facilities valued at over $518million have been identified. As at November 2013, as a result of the earthquakes:

  • We were occupying 25 bulidings with Critical Structural Weaknesses. In addition there are 11 buildings considered to be earthquake-prone, planned to be demolished.
  •  Demolition is underway or completed for seven buildings.
  •  Demolition is planned for 29 more buildings in addition to those that will enable redevelopment projects.
  •   Visible quake damage has been recorded in more than 14,000 rooms.
  •  Over 700 staff have been displaced - many into temporary, cramped locations including portacoms.
  •  Some services are spit over multiple locations.
  •  Both staff and patients have to endure the disruptions, as a complex matrix of freeing up clinical space to house temporary facilities, is applied to enable EQ repairs.

I continue to be amazed with how our people and our health system are navigating through this uncharted territory. Please take the time to have a good look around this website. These work stories, published articles, videos, and photographs that relate to the 22 February 2011 earthquake acknowledge and demonstrate the exemplary way people in the Canterbury Health System reacted on that day and in the days that followed. They also provide an official record that can be viewed by people all over New Zealand, and indeed the world.

Wherever you sit in the health system, I'd like to say thanks.  A heart-felt thanks for the important role you play in making sure Canterbury people continue to receive the right care in the right place at the right time by the right person despite the ongoing environmental challenges. And thanks too for your patience while we make our health facilities better.

David Meates
Chief Executive Officer
Canterbury District Health Board