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Auckland DHB Department of Critical Care Medicine

Public Service


Critical care is the specialist care given to patients with sudden and potentially reversible life-threatening diseases or injuries. This can include following accidents, operations, severe infections or a coma. Critical care is divided into two areas; intensive care, where the sickest patients are cared for and high dependency, where patients who are not well enough to return to general wards are cared for.
The Department of Critical Care Medicine (also known commonly as DCCM) is one of the leading critical care units in New Zealand, located on the 8th floor of Auckland City Hospital.  We provide intensive care and high dependency care for patients over the age of 15 for all conditions except heart, lung and blood vessel surgery.  Our specialist areas of intensive care include liver, kidney and pancreas transplantation and neurological conditions. 
The Department of Critical Care is staffed by a team of highly experienced and professional doctors and nurses who are supported by other healthcare professionals. Medical care is provided by specialist doctors (intensivists) who are trained to look after very ill patients and doctors training to be specialists in intensive care, anaesthesia, emergency medicine and internal medicine. Most nurses in critical care are also specialised with postgraduate training and qualifications in intensive care. Patients requiring intensive care treatment have a nurse allocated to look after them individually. High dependency patients may be cared for by a nurse who is also looking after another patient. Other essential staff members include physiotherapists, dietitians, pharmacists, radiographers, biomedical technicians alongside other healthcare professionals to help care for these very ill patients.

We have over 1200 admissions per year of which 75% are emergency and 25% elective. The median length of stay in DCCM is 1.5 days, however patients may require a prolonged stay.

We have 24 beds in total - 18 are open bed spaces, and the remaining 6 are isolation side rooms.



24 hour / 7 day clinical service
Please see below for visiting information

Referral Expectations

Patients may be admitted to Critical Care from the Emergency Department, hospital wards, operating theatre or following transfer from another hospital or intensive care unit. Critical Care staff also provide help and support if a patient becomes seriously ill on a ward or in the Emergency Department.

Procedures / Treatments

  • Heart and Circulation Problems

    Patients with critical illness commonly develop problems with their heart and circulation.… More

  • Breathing Problems

    Respiratory failure occurs when the breathing system is no longer able to provide enough oxygen or remove enough carbon dioxide from the body.… More

  • Kidney Problems

    Kidney (or renal) failure is when a patient’s kidneys are unable to remove wastes and excess fluid from the blood.… More

  • Coma

    Coma or loss of consciousness may be caused by many things such as drugs, injury, bleeding in the brain, brain infection, seizures, or by sedation and anaesthesia given as part of treatment for other conditions.… More

  • Research

    As part of our commitment to the provision of quality intensive care, the Department of Critical Care Medicine actively promotes research.… More


If a patient is not eligible for public funded healthcare in New Zealand then there will be a charge for intensive care and high dependency services (except if the admission is due to accidental injury and eligible for ACC).

Visiting Hours

The DCCM is closed to visiting during the daily major ward round which occurs between 8.30am - 11am.  You may be asked to leave briefly during the other ward rounds that occur between 4 - 5pm and 9 - 11pm.  Visiting between 10pm and 8.30am is by arrangement only.

Visiting is generally limited to next-of-kin or close friends, and no more than 2 may be with the patient at a time. Patient care takes priority and visiting may not be possible when some procedures are being undertaken.

Waiting rooms are provided in the Level 8 gallery nearby. Overnight accommodation is not permitted in this area, but limited accommodation is available on-site at the Te Whare Awhina  (Ph. ext 25830).

Children are permitted to visit, but as there are hazards present, please supervise children at all times.

To reduce risk of infection, please clean your hands with alcohol gel before and after visiting the patient area. Flowers are not permitted in the patient area as they may be an infection risk.


Refreshment vending machines are available in the Level 8 gallery, and there are food and beverage outlets on Level 5 open 8am - 8pm daily.


Limited overnight accommodation is available on-site at Te Whare Awhina (Ph ext 25830) or nearby off-site at Domain Lodge (Ph. 308-0161).


In order to improve our services, we will contact most patients and/or families 2 - 6 months after Critical Care admission to seek feedback.

Contact Details

Auckland City Hospital

Central Auckland

2 Park Road
Auckland 1023

Information about this location

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Street Address

2 Park Road
Auckland 1023

Postal Address

Private Bag 92 024
Auckland Mail Centre
Auckland 1142

This page was last updated at 10:01AM on August 29, 2017. This information is reviewed and edited by Auckland DHB Department of Critical Care Medicine.