A brief history

The development of health insurance in New Zealand effectively transformed the private hospital environment. During the 1960s, when the growth of Southern Cross’s insurance business was modest and orderly, there was ample spare capacity in private hospitals.
During the 1970s, rapid growth put pressure on private hospitals - not just for beds but for theatre facilities and improved quality of equipment and sophisticated care. Southern Cross directors had always taken this matter very seriously - based on a commitment not just to quality, but also availability too. Private hospital patients clearly expected no waiting.
Southern Cross directors formed a completely separate trust capable of managing and operating any hospitals that might approach them for finance and management expertise. The new Southern Cross Hospital Trust (later renamed Southern Cross Health Trust) was registered in 1977.
Southern Cross Hospitals was effectively established as the assets and land of first hospital, the Lavington Hospital in Auckland, was acquired, In 1980, a new hospital costing over $3 million was approved in Auckland to replace the Lavington Hospital.
Christchurch hospital in Bealey Avenue was added to Southern Cross’ portfolio of properties. With significant developments starting in the late 1990’s, Christchurch has grown to become our largest campus in the country.
Northcote Hospital in Palmerston North was transferred to the Southern Cross Hospital Trust, this hospital merged with Aorangi hospital in 2012 and in 2013 it became known as Crest Hospital.
Investments in land and building projects in Tauranga and agreement to purchase of St Andrews Hospital in Rotorua signaled the first steps to development of more facilities across New Zealand. Southern Cross Tauranga merged with the Norfolk Community Trust to form a Joint Venture in 2001, and then in 2007, the combined business moved to a new Hospital facility in Oropi (Grace Hospital). Southern Cross Rotorua merged with QE Hospital in 2007. This partnership saw the successful development of a significantly improved private hospital facility in 2009, and then became a wholly owned Southern Cross Hospital in 2012.
The Iona Trust Hospital in New Plymouth was acquired.
Land purchased on Auckland’s North Shore is the first step to a future hospital development on Wairau Road. With recent land acquisitions and ongoing developments, our North Harbour Hospital site will be a significant private health campus well into the future.
Land purchased in Wellington is the first step to a hospital development there, with our hospital in Welllington now developed into a significant private hospital facility.
Projects involving development in Napier, Invercargill and Wanganui progress.
Brightside’s new, high tech hospital is re-opened on the Epsom site in Auckland.
Our Gillies Hospital joint venture was formed, based on Gilles Avenue. Run as a very successful partnership, it became a wholly-owned Southern Cross hospital in 2014.
Auckland Surgical Centre, a successful purpose-built day stay hospital was purchased by Southern Cross Hospitals.
Ormiston Hospital, a new private hospital development was built in South East Auckland.
The Southern Endoscopy Centre, a joint venture with medical specialists, opened for business on Southern Cross’ Christchurch hospital campus.
Another new joint venture is formed, involving Nelson's Manuka Street Hospital.
Southern Cross Hospitals forms a joint venture partnership with TBI Health, a specialist in injury management and rehabilitation services.
Southern Cross Hospitals joins forces with a group of specialists to build a new endoscopy unit in the Wellington Region. The Rutherford Clinic will service the Hutt Valley, Wairarapa and Kapiti Coast. In Auckland, a new Southern Cross Hospitals join venture partnership with workplace healthcare provider, Medpro was established.
Southern Cross Hospitals partners with Central Lakes Trust to begin development of a surgical hospital in Queenstown. In Auckland, a new Southern Cross Hospitals joint venture partnership with a group of leading orthopaedic specialists, North Shore Surgical Centre, opens in Auckland. Southern Cross Rehabilitation, a subsidiary of Southern Cross Hospitals, acquires a stake in North Island health business Active+.
Southern Cross Rehabilitation, a subsidiary of Southern Cross Hospitals,acquires a stake in EAPworks, a leading New Zealand owned and operated mental health and wellness provider for businesses.
Southern Cross Hospitals is the largest network of private surgical hospitals in the country. In the 2019 financial year, it provided elective surgery, high-end diagnostics and cancer treatment to over 86,000 patients across its network of wholly-owned or joint venture hospitals and medical facilities. In addition, rehabilitation, mental health and corporate wellness services are provided to New Zealanders. Nearly 1,000 surgeons and anaesthetists are credentialed to practice within its hospital facilities, and Southern Cross' hospitals and joint venture partners provide services to insurance-funded, ACC, DHB and self-paying patients.