In this Blenheim location guide, we highlight the unique benefits of the area and its facilities, outlining the opportunities available to our doctors. This location is part of a wider series that showcases what it is like to work in a specific region in either Australia or New Zealand.
Blenheim, New Zealand
Situated at the heart of the Marlborough district, Blenheim boasts one of the sunniest climates in New Zealand, with warm summers and crisp winters amounting to an estimated average of 2,438 hours of sunshine per year. It is well-known as the centre of New Zealand’s wine industry, and the abundance of vineyards surrounding the area, particularly in the stunning Wairau Valley, thrive in this environment. In fact, Blenheim produces the majority of New Zealand’s Sauvignon Blanc, which has found favour all over the world for its vibrant, zesty quality.
In celebration of the region’s diverse offerings, the annual Marlborough Wine and Food Festival is the longest-running event of its kind in New Zealand, showcasing local wines, fresh produce and world-famous entertainment. Those not inclined to winery-hopping will still have plenty of options to stimulate their taste buds, from sampling handmade chocolates to visiting a unique beer garden. In and around the urban area, you’ll also find an abundance of cafes, restaurants, bars and artisan food outlets.
The town is home to several fascinating and affordable museums, including director Peter Jackson’s personal collection of WW1 planes and memorabilia on display in the “Knights of the Sky” exhibition at The Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre. The aviation story of the war is brought to life in sensational sets created by the acclaimed talent of Weta Workshop – a spectacle that is not to be missed!
Blenheim is a great place to explore on foot, with a range of popular walkways available in the district’s many parks and reserves, including the Taylor River Reserve and the botanical gardens at Pollard Park, which is also home to a playground and golf course. Further afield, you’ll find walks through the bush and along the rugged coastline, as well as fishing, kayaking, water-skiing and scenic cruises. Just a short drive away, you can swim with dolphins in the Marlborough Sounds or go whale-watching in Kaikoura. And although Blenheim gives the impression of being in a world of its own, Wellington is just a 30-minute flight away.
Wairau Hospital, Nelson Marlborough District Health Board
Falling under the Nelson Marlborough District Health Board – the major health services provider in the top of the South Island, Wairau Hospital provides approximately 65 beds for a catchment population of 44,000.
Key services include General Medicine, General Surgery, ENT, Dental, Urology, Orthopaedics, Ophthalmology, Paediatrics, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, AT&R and Anaesthetics, and also refers Marlborough patients to Nelson Hospital for specialised services when required. The hospital’s Emergency Department was recognised by the National Asset Management Programme as the only one in New Zealand to provide adequate space, layout, storage and operating room capacity for a modern model of care.
For its medical staff, Wairau Hospital offers a range of facilities, including computers, printers, TV, a separate bedroom and kitchen, as well as showers, toilets and lockers. There is also a gym and a clinical library available on site. For those looking to upskill, there are plenty of opportunities to take part in training and education, from departmental teaching, lunchtime sessions and GP presentations to advanced cardiac life support training and radiology teaching – as well as generous training leave and expenses provisions.
With its stunning landscapes, a well-equipped hospital, it’s not hard to see why Blenheim is a top pick for many of the doctors we speak with.
To learn more about the region and any potential locum and permanent opportunities, please contact the team today.