New Spinal Cord Destination Policy launched at St John

Victoria Hawkins |

This morning Health Minister Jonathan Coleman and ACC Minister Nikki Kaye along with St John CEO Peter Bradley and Medical Director Tony Smith formally launched a new Spinal Cord Destination Policy at St John headquarters.

This policy means that from August 1st, anyone who suffers spinal cord injuries will be taken directly to a one of three specialist hospitals to maximise their long-term health and rehabilitation outcomes.

At the presentation Minister Coleman reiterated how important it is to get a patient with suspected spinal cord injuries to a specialist spinal service as soon as possible.   “This will help minimise the potential for complications and rehabilitation can start sooner,” he said.

The two adult spinal specialist centres are Middlemore and Christchurch Hospital, and for children the centre is located within Auckland’s Starship Hospital.  

This initiative has been developed between St John, Wellington Free Ambulance, the Ministry of Health and ACC.  Please read the Ministerial media statement or watch the TVNZ One News item.


For further information please contact:

Victoria Hawkins

St John Media & Public Relations Manager

T 09 526 0528 X 7877

M 021 605342


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