Saving & Extending Lives

Better outcomes for our children

Together we help Starship keep pace with the latest technology and treatments, and attract and retain the best and brightest staff. So our children are given the best chance to get back to living life.

Saving and Extending Lives hero


More than 2000 children need an MRI at Starship each year including our infants and young people with the most complex medical conditions. So we’re delighted that Starship’s magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machine got a $910,000 upgrade in 2019 because our brilliant staff now have the latest technology, and our children will continue to receive the absolute best care possible.

“We can scan children in less time and with less noise, and the images are better than ever before. It allows us to detect and monitor disease in ways that we previously couldn’t,” says the very grateful David Perry, Paediatric Radiologist at Starship. 

The Douglas Starship Simulation Training Programme continues to go from strength to strength. In 2019, the team up-skilled more clinicians in simulation training than ever before through the Introduction to Simulation courses and Faculty Development Workshops. Participants come from across New Zealand and receive on-going outreach support, with active collaborations to advance local simulation programmes in the likes of Nelson, Whangarei and Hawkes Bay.

Cerebral Palsy is the most common cause of childhood physical disability and can lead to disturbances in motor development, communication, eyesight, hearing, epilepsy and secondary musculo-skeletal deformities. Recipient of the Athlae Lyon Starship Research Award for 2019, Starship’s Dr Sue Stott is doing amazing things to improve the lives of our children living with cerebral palsy. With greater knowledge, care and treatment for these children is moving towards earlier interventions and Dr Stott’s goal is to empower caregivers and health professionals across New Zealand with the latest information.

$250,000 invested in bettering the lives of children with Cerebral Palsy in New Zealand


Your support allows some of our best and brightest doctors to specialise in their chosen field right here in New Zealand, keeps Starship at the cutting edge by driving research and best practice from learning through the Starship Foundation Fellowship Programme. The ultimate benefit is that our children receive the best care possible from those who dedicate their careers to saving and extending lives, and are committed to advancing paediatric healthcare.

5 Fellowships awarded in 2019 across Developmental Paediatrics, Te Puaruruhau, Paediatric Infectious Diseases, Orthopaedics and Nephrology.

World-class MRI for Ava’s fight against brain tumour



Late in 2019 Alex Stoneham heard news that no parent ever expects to hear.
Their twins, Isabella and Ava, were ten at the time. But close friends, the school teacher, and Alex had noticed that the usually sociable, sporty and energetic young Ava wanted to stay home all the time, and had lost her appetite and her energy.

Blood tests were normal, but then one Saturday morning Ava began vomiting. Seeking medical help this time led them to Starship and a few hours later, after a scan, Ava was diagnosed with a brain tumour.

“Since that night our journey with Starship started. Ava has had two surgeries to remove the tumour and is also now on a lifetime of medicine to help with hormones damaged by the tumour.”

“We have been treated so well by the staff at Starship and whilst it has often been hard, the experience at Starship has been amazing. Ava and I have made lifetime friends who we may never have met had we not been here.” – Mum Alex Stoneham

MRI imaging is crucial for Ava’s care and treatment, and she’s had MRI scans at Starship, all using latest technology thanks to the MRI upgrade made possible by you.

Paediatric Radiologist David Perry explains; “With clearer and more detailed images we can diagnose disease and monitor the effects of treatment with greater accuracy and certainty.”

“The upgrade to our equipment has a positive impact for each and every child we see.”

“We are very grateful to Starship supporters for making this possible sooner than it might otherwise have been.”