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New digital tool provides public access to our health profile

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New digital tool provides public access to our health profile

Southern Health has launched a new digital tool which allows the public, clinicians, and researchers to access information important to understanding the health needs of our population. 

The new website, Tō Tātou Pūkete, captures and explores data of Southern Health’s communities and whanau. There is a focus on four key areas: Demography - Who lives in Southern?; Health Drivers – What keeps us healthy?; Health Status – How well are we?; and Health Services – Where and how do we get healthcare?

The Tō Tātou Pūkete team worked with multiple stakeholders including the University of Otago, WellSouth Primary Health Network, Māori Health Directorate, Rūnaka, Community Health Council and others to bring this project to fruition.

Dr Susan Jack, Medical Officer of Health, says “Tō Tātou Pūkete moves away from traditional methods of publishing public health data and provides easy access to important health information for a wide audience.

The Tō Tātou Pūkete datasets enhance planning not only for the health service, but for the wider community – councils, non-government organisations, and primary care.  

“Tō Tātou Pūkete is a big part of the Southern DHB’s support for Aotearoa/New Zealand’s digital transformation, health reforms, and transition to Hauora Aotearoa/Health NZ.”

The information can be used by health planners, researchers and clinicians to better understand what people need most from their health care services.

Members of the public are also invited to explore Tō Tātou Pūkete to increase their awareness of what is happening in health in their region and to equip communities to identify and develop new health related initiatives.

The datasets look at a wide range of information; from characteristics of a population (e.g. numbers of people, births and deaths) to specific questions like rates of breastfeeding, smoking and bowel screening.

Sarah Martin Pou Whakatere, Public Health South says we really enjoyed the korero and partnership during the development of the Tō Tātou Pūkete. This health profile has significant data in relation to our community.

Dr Susan Jack says, “importantly Tō Tātou Pūkete offers an opportunity to empower the communities of Southern to participate in health and lead change.  It is readily available to anyone with web access.”


Links: Tō Tātou Pūkete: E mārama ana i kā Matea Hauora o te Tai Toka | Southern Health | He hauora, he kuru pounamu

HNA infographic

















  • What is a Health Needs Assessment? 

Under the New Zealand Public Health and Disability Act 2000 (NZPHD Act 2000), District Health Boards in New Zealand are required to regularly investigate, assess and monitor the health status and needs of its resident population. This process is called a Health Needs Assessment (HNA). 

  • What is the purpose of the project? 

To deliver a Health Needs Assessment (HNA) for the resident population of the Southern District that covers multiple areas of health and well-being with the ability to look trends over time.   

  • Why is this project important? 

Health Needs Assessments help stakeholders understand the needs, delivery and performance of the healthcare services. This helps ensure that services are optimally arranged to best meet local needs and reduce and eliminate health disparities between Māori and other population groups. 

  • What the objectives of Tō Tātou Pūkete? 
    • Provide an up-to-date, comprehensive, health needs assessment of the Southern population. 
    • Provide an accurate picture of health equity/inequity across the district 
    • Establish a repository of data for a set of chosen health measures that can be used to look at trends over time. 
    • Build a living document that can be easily updated in an automated and manual way 
    • Present findings that are understandable to a wide audience to maximise stakeholder and consumer engagement.


  • How can the public use the data? 
    • Tō Tātou Pūkete is organised across four key areas:  
      • Demography - Who lives in Southern? 
      • Health Drivers – What keeps us healthy? 
      • Health Status – How well are we? 
      • Health Services – Where and how do we get healthcare?   


  • Within each key area, there are indicators or a question to be answered. 
    • For each indicator there are a set of visual graphics accompanied by a written description.   
    • The second part of the HNA is the Data Exploration Portal.  The portal allows a more comprehensive examination of the data where one can view information by table or visual and filter according to interest.   
    • Where possible, the data spans a five-year time frame (sometimes longer) and can be filtered for age, sex, ethnicity, deprivation and territory local authority.