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Quality health info needed for quality services

Hon Pete Hodgson
Minister of Health

20 February 2006 Media Statement

Quality health information needed for quality services

A six-year project to develop a better understanding of the health of New Zealanders was launched by Health Minister Pete Hodgson at Parliament today.

The second phase of the New Zealand Health Monitor sets out the household surveys and cohort studies that will be carried out by the Ministry of Health between 2006-2012.

"Getting accurate and regular information about the health of New Zealanders is essential in the design of high quality health services," Pete Hodgson said.

"The surveys that make up the Health Monitor will help us answer a number of important questions, from whether our children are becoming more inactive to how many people are currently trying to quit smoking."

Since the New Zealand Health Monitor was launched in 2001 several surveys have been successfully completed, including the 2002/2003 New Zealand Health Survey and the 2002 Children's Nutrition Survey.

"Information from studies completed during the first five years of the Health Monitor has already been used to provide evidence for policy making. A good example of this is the estimates of Body Mass Index (BMI), which informed
the Ministry's Healthy Eating: Healthy Action policy," Pete Hodgson said.

Activity associated with the Health Monitor project is already underway. The New Zealand Tobacco Use Survey is currently in the field and the New Zealand Health Survey – which collects information from over 12,000 households – will be in the field from September.


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