10 ways DHBs can save money and improve patient outcomes


You’ve heard the buzzword, but what does it mean?

It’s worked overseas, and several New Zealand DHBs already do it. 

You may already be outsourcing to the private sector, but you could be insourcing too: bringing staff into your hospital to perform an operation, see patients in a clinic or fulfil a service. It means making more of what you already have.

There are many ways to insource. Could it help your DHB treat more patients sooner, closer to home and reduce waiting lists? These 10 examples show how insourcing with SEQURE Health could mean you spend less and achieve better patient outcomes.

1. Clinics on weekends

The problem: For some patients, attending an appointment on a weekday is a major disruption. They, and any supporting family, may need to take time off work or arrange childcare. Disrupting patients’ lives means missed appointments.

Our solution: We arrange staff to run weekend clinics, usually on a Saturday. These extra appointment times not only reduce waiting lists some 20% faster, but offering them means fewer missed appointments overall, because patients can choose times they’re more likely to be able to keep.

After-hours clinics also see much higher rates of productivity among staff, who are free from the usual distractions and pressures.

2. Operating after hours

The problem: You’re contracting out operations to private hospitals and clinics. You’re not only paying for private sector staff, but also, their facilities. Meanwhile, you have operating theatres unused in the evenings and on weekends.

Our solution: We put together travelling surgical teams to perform operations in your facilities at times they’d otherwise be unused. We find the staff, you approve them, and we make travel and accommodation arrangements, so there’s no extra admin burden. Using a travelling surgical team in your own facilities after hours can be X% less expensive.

We put together travelling surgical teams to perform operations in your facilities at times they’d otherwise be unused.

3. Pay based on consultations and procedures

The problem: The Ministry funds DHBs according to consultations and procedures performed. When staff are paid a daily rate, there’s a mismatch.

Our solution: Our contracts specify payment based on consultations and procedures completed. This helps us attract only the most motivated people, and builds stronger team relationships by encouraging everyone to work together to make sure there’s always a real outcome for the patient.

4. Dedicating staff to follow-up appointments

The problem: When resources are stretched, low priority cases usually have to wait. But we know follow-up appointments really matter for patients’ long-term health. These appointments catch problems early and strengthen relationships between patients and health professionals.

Our solution: We’ve helped DHBs commit to all-round care by adding specialist staff dedicated to seeing follow-up patients. Our contracts mean we can adapt quickly to patient numbers, so you know your patients receive the support they need after a diagnosis or treatment.

5. Stop worrying about travel and accommodation

The problem: Arranging their own travel and accommodation can be off-putting for many potential locums, especially those new to New Zealand. If the DHB takes on the job, you end up with administration squeezes elsewhere.

Our solution: We can take away the headache by making travel and accommodation arrangements for travelling staff. If there are delays, we always have someone on-hand to make alternative arrangements. You can relax and know the person you need will make it to their destination without stress.

6. Get a team, not just a group

The problem: You already know that putting people together doesn’t necessarily make a team. And that creates risk.

Our solution: We have the experience and contacts to know who works well together. We’ll find you a team with complementary skills and proven track record.

We’ll find you a team with complementary skills and proven track record.

7. Relieve the burden on permanent staff

The problem: If permanent staff being overworked or regularly running over capacity is an issue for your DHB, you may see morale fall and standards slip. Important tasks go on the back-burner.

Our solution: When a SEQURE staff member or team comes on board, it frees up time for permanent staff to work proactively. Whether the need to give time to career development or resolving complex, long-term problems, we hear great feedback from permanent staff on what they’ve managed to achieve.

8. Keep it public

The problem: When DHBs contract out operations or procedures to the private sector, it’s more than just money travelling out of the public sector. The high regard of patients may get transferred to the private sector, although they may be being treated by the same staff, to the same standard.

Our solution: There are many doctors, nurses and staff members in New Zealand hospitals who want the chance to do more. That means, we’re often bringing in teams from elsewhere in the public health sector to hold clinics or perform operations.

The benefits of keeping it public are many, including:

  • guaranteed patient familiarity, building the reputation of public system
  • lowering risk to patients by avoiding transfer to another facility
  • improved continuity of care with patient records kept in one system.

9. Keep the locum roster full

The problem: You can’t predict the length of some staff absences, like parental leave, or the time it will take to fill a permanent post. It’s rare to find one locum who’ll agree to a contract of uncertain length. There’s a high administration burden for DHBs in making sure there’s always someone in place.

Our solution: Hand over your locum roster to SEQURE and you’ll be giving it to people with the contacts and the time to make sure you’ve always got it covered.

10. Consider full-service contracting

The problem: There are times when a DHB feels a whole clinic, service or department needs a fresh approach. It might be when a service needs help meeting standards across the board, or a newly established clinic needs to get off on the right foot.

Our solution: At SEQURE we can take on the management of a whole clinic, service or department for however long you need, coordinating everything from administration, to communication, to operations. Simply tell us what goals you want the service to meet, and we’ll do the rest.

Get started with insourcing

Find out more about insourcing or discuss any problem with us today. All conversations are confidential and carry no obligation.


Level 11, 175 Victoria Street
Wellington 6011

PO Box 11-801
Wellington 6142


Tel 04 499 2624
email enquire@sequrehealth.com