The latest update on the Ministry of Health's quarterly targets shows Northland has the best access to elective surgery in the country.
The region's district health board moved from fifth to first place out of 20 boards, reflecting its increase in the volume of elective surgeries completed.
The ministry health targets are national performance measures designed to improve how health services perform.
Northland DHB chief executive Nick Chamberlain said overall the region's health target results showed good improvement, which was "pleasing".
"We have improved our national ranking across five of the six health targets."
The only target the board failed to meet was the percentage of infants immunised. The target for increased immunisation was for 85 per cent of 8-month-olds to have their primary course of immunisation on time by July 2013, with the target increasing to 90 per cent by July 2014 and 95 per cent by December 2014.
Northland achieved 83 per cent of immunisations - slightly below the ministry target and below the national average of 89 per cent in the last quarter.
Dr Chamberlain said he wanted to acknowledge the hard work from the Manaia and Te Tai Tokerau primary health organisations, whose work contributed to the increase in immunisation from the previous quarter.
"The 8 per cent increase of the immunisation target represents progress, but we will continue to drive education and public awareness to ensure that we meet the target. One initiative has been to contact all mothers of newborn babies informing them of the importance of immunising on time and encouraging them to register with their primary health organisation or Well Child provider. This will ensure they are reminded of the immunisation date in a timely manner and increase the likelihood that the child will be immunised on time."
The target for better help for smokers to quit was for 95 per cent of patients who smoked and were seen by a health practitioner in public hospitals, and 90 per cent of patients who smoke and were seen by a health practitioner in primary care, to be offered brief advice and support to quit smoking.
Northland was 3 per cent over target, with 98 per cent of smokers receiving help. On average, 95 per cent of all boards met the target.
The figure demonstrated the board's commitment to a smokefree Northland, Dr Chamberlain said.
Introduced in the 2007 financial year, the targets are reviewed annually to align with government health priorities.