West Coast Health is your Primary Health Organisation (PHO).

These organisations are local structures to coordinate the delivery of primary care services (such as GP Practices and Medical Centres) to local populations. Their roles are to:

  • Provide care and treatment when people are ill
  • Help people stay healthy
  • Ensure care reaches those people in the community with poor health, and who are missing out on health care.

PHOs bring together the entire range of health professionals who are involved in providing community health care, to make sure everyone in the community is able to access whatever aspect of care they need as quickly and easily as possible.

  • As well as doctors and nurses, this includes:

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    Māori health workers

    Health promotion workers




    Psychologists, and others.

  • Our Partners

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    Te Whatu Ora Health New Zealand

    Poutini Waiora

    Te Mana Ora

    Te Ha

    Te Hono


PHOs are not-for-profit organisations funded by the government through Te Whatu Ora Health New Zealand.

The level of funding is based on the numbers of people enrolled with the PHO, and the characteristics of the local population (e.g., age, sex, ethnicity and deprivation).

Funding allows PHOs to:

  • Subsidise doctor’s visits
  • Reduce prescription costs
  • Run health promotion programmes
  • Develop innovative ways of improving the uptake of services to reduce health inequalities in their populations.

More detailed information on the structure and funding of PHOs can be found on the Ministry of Health website.

Note: All but one West Coast practice is Very Low Cost Access (VLCA) funded. This means that Coasters pay the lowest co-payment available and under 13s are free if they are enrolled with a Coast practice and attend that practice for a normal appointment within office hours.

West Coast Health Clinical Governance Committee

West Coast Health has an established Clinical Governance Committee (CGC) who act as an advisory committee to its Board. The CGC’s role is to assist the Board with any clinical aspects that relate to its business. This may include (but is not limited to) the following:

  • Any clinical and quality improvement aspects of PHO programmes or projects
  • Ensuring that national standards, guidance and clinical best practice are systematically reviewed and embedded within the PHO clinical programmes
  • Advice on workforce arrangements necessary to meet specified clinical outcomes
  • Detailed analysis of clinical issues and risks associated with PHO programmes or projects
  • Ensuring that its programmes target and define at risk populations and minimise barriers to accessing its services
  • Contribute to performance plans and health measures
  • Provide clinical advice to the PHO Clinical Manager and other staff
  • Advise on professional development for PHO contracted providers

Membership, appointment process and meetings

The length of term for members is three years. The Chair is elected by members annually.  Formal membership is ratified by the Board annually and the list of CGC members is published. CGC Membership consists of:

  • Two General Practitioner representatives
  • Practice nurse representative
  • Practice manager representative
  • Community representative
  • Iwi representative
  • Poutini Waiora representative
  • Pharmacist representative
  • Representative of secondary care clinical advisory committee
  • Community and Public Health Medical Officer – ex-officio