Charity hospital bumps up services post quakes

GEORGINA STYLIANOU
Last updated 05:00 16/05/2012

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The Canterbury Charity Hospital hopes a $1.9 million extension will help ease shortages of some health services.

The project's completion coincides with a New Zealand Psychological Society award for the hospital's post-earthquake counselling work.

The hospital's new wing will provide free counselling, dental and endoscopy services to Cantabrians.

Hospital trust chairman Phil Bagshaw said the hospital did not offer mental health services before the quakes but wanted to respond to an "overwhelming demand".

Founded in 2007, it provides day surgery and relies entirely on public money.

Bagshaw said the counselling service highlighted the hospital's need for more space.

He said the need for dental and endoscopy services was "currently unmet in this city" and the new wing would enable the hospital to provide important health services.

In the past year, 60 volunteer counsellors have given free sessions to about 1500 people.

The hospital applied for $1m of funding from the Christchurch Earthquake Mayoral Relief Fund and received $200,000.

People can donate to the trust by visiting charityhospital.org.nz.

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- The Press

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