Whanganui District Health Board chairwoman Dot McKinnon says a largely unchanged board will allow it to implement strategy developed over the past term.

Areas of focus would include improving the health of people in rural areas and Māori health, she said.

Provisional election results show six incumbents have been re-elected. Josh Chandulal-Mackay (2214.41) is the only new face around the table.

Chandulal-Mackay, who has also been re-elected to Whanganui District Council, said he was very excited to be elected to both roles.


"After having spent three years on council, I understand how much policy and legislation and process drives these organisations and how to be an effective board member on any governance entity," he said.

He wanted to begin by taking the time to get to know what was going on within the Whanganui DHB and its processes so he could contribute effectively.

Mental health and suicide prevention are a key focus for Chandulal-Mackay, who has had experience as the deputy chair of Youth Services Trust Whanganui and as a former Youthline councillor.

"From my experience in the Youth Services Trust, we have people in critical need of counselling and mental health support that can't get onto waiting lists and I have seen how stretched services are right now so in terms of a mental health angle I'll be coming in from that."

McKinnon said it would be wonderful to have Chandulal-Mackay on the board to add a younger element and as he had already done a good job on the council.

"There are huge benefits in retaining existing members as we have just gone through a strategic planning session and got a way forward. If we had a large number of changes new people might differently. Now we can just get on with our mahi and continue with what we're doing."

Four members of the board, including the position of chairperson, will be appointed by the Minister of Health in November.

All four current members, including McKinnon, have put their names forward to be re-appointed.


McKinnon said if she was re-appointed it would be business as usual for the next three years as no major capital works were scheduled.

She said their main focuses would be improving the health of people in rural areas, improving access to health services and making sure they had a large equity focus particularly on Māori health.

"We are looking at working alongside our other sectors including education, MSD, police, council to try and get a bigger wellbeing focus."

The existing board will continue until December 9 and then new members will begin.

Annette Main topped the results chart with 2893 votes ahead of Charlie Anderson on 2338. Philippa Baker-Hogan (2217.68) Judith McDonald (2136.25) Stuart Hylton (2134.6), and Graham Adams (2067.45) were the others elected.