Information for referrers

Covid update 19th July 2022.

We are now in the Covid protection framework, Blenheim is at orange with the rest of the country. We are taking admissions as normal, however we will use Rapid Antigen testing to be able to identify & isolate Covid positive residents.

We strongly encourage you to be double vaccinated and boosted prior to coming here. We cannot force you to be vaccinated, that is your choice. We can however assess the risk of you coming in, request that you take a Covid test and isolate here if needed before entering our general community.

Please contact us if you need to to discuss further.

We are pleased to say that the Staff and Board of St Marks have achieved 100% vaccination coverage.

Our current wait time is about 12 weeks. However, quite often beds become available at short notice. If the person you are working with does not require a detox and can come at short notice, please be sure to let us know.

We expect people to come here illicit drug and alcohol free, and, unless coming direct from detox, we test on admission; people that arrive here having consumed illicit drugs or alcohol may be denied admission for the safety of staff and other residents.

Please note, we do take private, self funding referrals, contact us for more information.

St Marks Referral process:

  • Qualified counsellors/key workers employed in the Addiction Field and working within a South Island Community AOD service (CADS) or NGO addiction service funded by local DHB
  • Tāngata whai ora wishing to fund their own treatment privately (you will still need an assessment).

Who cannot refer directly to St Marks:

  • Tāngata whai ora (self-referrals) unless intending to fund their own treatment
  • General Practitioners
  • Department of Corrections unless through a regional coordinator or S.Island AOD service (we do have a contract for a bed with Corrections)
  • North Island Services

Requirements for admission:

  • A recent AOD Comprehensive Assessment completed by a qualified practitioner
  • Pre admission paperwork returned
  • Supporting information e.g. Reports from other services relevant to referral
  • Admission to St Marks once accepted, must be on a Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday (no later than 2pm).

Process on receipt of referral:

Our clinical team will review the information received and decide in collaboration with the referrer as to the tāngata whai ora suitability for the programme.

Our operational support team will confirm acceptance and send you our pre admission paperwork (possibly with a preliminary admission date), once we have received the pre admission paperwork back from you, a confirmed date will will allocated for entry and you will be informed, you should have at least four weeks notice, though occasionally we will try and get the tangata whai ora here sooner.

Once St Marks allocate an entry date and a one-on-one practitioner for the tangata whai ora. The referrer will be notified by email in the first instance. The allocated practitioner will then liaise with both the referrer and the prospective resident as they establish an admission pathway including duration of programme (number of weeks), detox arrangements/bookings as required, travel plans and aftercare/discharge plans. You will also be in contact with our operational support staff who are really friendly and knowledgable about the things our practitioners need to ensure smooth admission.

Contact between the St Marks staff, tāngata whai ora and referrers is of the utmost importance to achieve the best possible outcome for people.

The reason we ask for the pre admission paperwork first is to ensure a speedy transition to entry date. It is our experience that when we allocated a date, sometimes, we have had to postpone or change that date as the paperwork we need to admit someone was not here in time, medication not arranged, benefits not in place and so on. It can be an anxious time for someone coming here and we want it to be as smooth a transition to here as possible. We have had occasions when people arrive here, without the correct paperwork and we take them off programme for the first couple of days to get benefits etc. sorted out, and they have become quite distressed, far better to get this done before they get here, thank you.

Referral Flowchart

Click image to enlarge:


  • 61 Main Street, Blenheim
    7201 Marlborough

To empower, reconnect & give hope. Enabling lifelong change to create a positive future for individuals and whānau impacted by Alcohol & Drug Addiction.

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