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Complex to help improve national health care

Media Release June 8, 2004

Population Health Complex to help improve national health care

Research teams dedicated to improving the health of all New Zealanders now have a new home at The University of Auckland's Population Health Complex. The new purpose-built complex is located at the University's Tamaki Campus, which is distinguished by its collaborative, inter-disciplinary, and research-intensive profile.

The Population Health Complex was officially opened today , by the Vice-Chancellor of The University of Auckland, Dr John Hood.

The four-level building houses the Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences' School of Population Health, staff and students from Pharmacy, Nursing and Occupational Medicine programmes, as well as Optometry and Speech Language Therapy researchers from the Faculty of Science.

Tamaki Campus Pro Vice-Chancellor, Professor Ralph Cooney welcomes the addition of the Population Health Complex to the Campus' existing facilities.

"This complex is an important addition to Tamaki, bringing staff and students with more interdisciplinary skills and new areas of research focus. Tamaki's goal is to encourage internal and external collaboration. Having two of our faculties working together in this building with the potential for many external research partners on-site, is an exceptional platform for achieving that objective."

Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences Dean Professor Peter Smith says the building embodies a totally new concept in integrating public and community health to study the unique health problems of New Zealand and develop innovative solutions.

"Teams in the new complex will take research in the area of population health to a new level with international implications. By design and appearance, this distinctive building creates a unique environment in which collaboration in research and teaching will flourish for the good of New Zealand.

"The University's $30 million investment in the development of this complex sends a strong signal about its commitment to fostering world class population health research in New Zealand," says Professor Smith.

Dean of the Faculty of Science Dick Bellamy says the Faculty is pleased to be able to expand its role at the Tamaki Campus through its presence in the new complex.

"We are particularly excited about the opportunity for students to work in the new purpose-built clinics that the complex boasts. This is an integral part of their learning process and is a requisite for their degree," says Professor Bellamy.

The building's design features include energy-efficient lighting and heating systems, and the intentional use of local materials, natural light and ventilation. An open floor plan enhances communication and a central courtyard and café create a sense of community.

ENDS

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