Travel between Nelson and Wairau hospitals 

People who live in the Nelson, Tasman and Marlborough regions may be treated at either Nelson or Wairau Hospital.

People who live in Marlborough may need to travel to Nelson Hospital to receive specialist care that isn't available at Wairau.

People who live in Nelson may be offered treatment at Wairau – an earlier appointment than they would be able to get at Nelson. In these cases, Nelsonians are encouraged to take up the offer of earlier treatment at the redeveloped, comfortable and modern Wairau Hospital.

People who travel between hospitals in this way, and who are Community Services Card holders, may be eligible for financial assistance for travel and accommodation.

Click here to visit the Work & Income NZ website for more information


Inpatient transfers (hospital to hospital)

Inpatient transfer refers to people who are already in the hospital, being treated as an inpatient, and who need to be transferred to another hospital.

This may be to Nelson or Wairau Hospital or to a hospital outside of the Nelson, Tasman and Marlborough region (such as Wellington or Christchurch Hospital).

In these cases, patients travel with a medical professional in the most appropriate way determined for that patient (eg by ambulance or fixed-wing aircraft or helicopter).


Our patient travel team will help arrange accommodation for family members of patients being transferred if required.

More information about inter-hospital transfers can be found in these two fact sheets below: 


Outpatient transfer to an out-of-district hospital 

Sometimes patients need to be treated at a hospital in another region. This usually occurs when specialist care is needed at a bigger hospital.

Patients that receive confirmation of an appointment or procedure at a hospital outside of the Nelson, Tasman and Marlborough region (such as Wellington or Christchurch Hospital) will likely have their travel organised by the Nelson Marlborough Health patient travel team.

The National Travel Assistance Scheme assists with costs incurred when you travel for healthcare appointments outside of the Nelson, Tasman and Marlborough regions.

Click here to find out more about the National Travel Assistance Scheme