Nicole Forster announcement

Southern Cross Healthcare appoints new General Manager at Christchurch Hospital

Wednesday , 6 September 2023 by Sherryl Arneil

Southern Cross Healthcare has appointed Nicole Forster as General Manager at its Christchurch Hospital.

Forster brings a breadth of commercial and leadership experience, most recently at Ryman Healthcare. During her 10 years at Ryman, Forster led several years of record-breaking Net Promoter Scores (engagement) and established the Ryman Academy to support leadership development. Her strong roots in healthcare also include past roles as General Manager at a nursing agency bureau and as a First Responder with Hato Hone St John.

Since arriving in New Zealand from the UK in 2008, Forster’s career has spanned several other industries, including construction, hospitality and retail. Forster is a member of the Canterbury Regional Skills Leadership Group and Chair of the New Regent Street Business Association. She is also the founder and director of a retail start-up.

Southern Cross Healthcare Chief Operations Officer Mark Stewart said Forster’s appointment as General Manager will help drive the hospital’s commitment to the best possible healthcare in Christchurch.

“I’m delighted to welcome Nicole. With her exceptional experience and expertise across health and commercial sectors, I am confident she will lead the hospital in delivering new levels of excellence and innovation for our patients.”

Forster said she is excited to be taking on the role.

“It’s a privilege for me to joining the well-established team in Christchurch. Southern Cross Healthcare has a reputation for providing extraordinary care, and leading healthcare innovation, so I feel aligned to the ambitions and values of this purpose-driven organisation. There’s a lot of opportunity in the healthcare sector, and I am looking forward to working with our people to deliver the very best for New Zealanders.”

Forster joins at an exciting time for the hospital with a $2 million refurbishment of two key theatres on its way. The upgrade will include a state-of-the-art system creating a future-ready surgical integration platform to drive efficiency in the operating room and to improve turnaround times. Patient comfort will also be central to the design and incorporate aesthetic improvements to relieve patient nervousness.

Forster will take up her new role from September 18 and theatre refurbishment will take place over the Christmas and New Year period.