The Havelock North drinking water inquiry: A wake-up call to rebuild public health in New Zealand

Wednesday, December 20th, 2017 | dayhi34p | No Comments

Prof Michael Baker, Prof Nick Wilson, Prof Alistair Woodward

The huge campylobacteriosis outbreak in Havelock North in August 2016 caused by contaminated drinking water was a public health disaster. The second report of the Havelock North Drinking Water Inquiry describes a long list of failings that contributed to the outbreak. In this blog we argue that the failings are much broader than the safety of drinking water supplies and represent a serious erosion and fragmentation of NZ’s national public health institutions. What is needed now is a major stocktake and rebuilding of our country’s national public health capacity.

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Smokefree cars legislation: Should the new government make this a priority?

Monday, December 11th, 2017 | dayhi34p | No Comments

George Thomson, Richard Edwards, Richard Jaine, Janet Hoek, Jude Ball, Nick Wilson

This blog briefly reviews the case for the prioritisation by the new Government of a law for smokefree cars carrying children. This would demonstrate their commitment to children’s health and well-being, respond to public and smoker opinion, follow official and Parliamentary advice, and fit with the research evidence favouring legislation for health reasons.

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Patterns of Declining Smoking in NZ – But More Action Needed by the New Government

Monday, November 20th, 2017 | dayhi34p | No Comments

Nick Wilson, Frederieke Sanne van der Deen, Richard Edwards, George Thomson, Anaru Waa, Tony Blakely

Just published results from the NZ Health Survey indicate ongoing declines in smoking for Māori and for European New Zealanders. In this blog we comment on the possible reasons for these trends and describe recent work on how progress could be accelerated.

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Walking and cycling for transport is good for physical activity levels in Kiwis!

Tuesday, October 31st, 2017 | dayhi34p | No Comments

Dr Caroline Shaw

Physical activity is good for health. Higher levels of physical activity are associated with reduced rates of breast and colon cancer, better mental health, lower obesity rates, lower heart disease, stroke (the list goes on). This blog looks at a new study we just published that found that New Zealanders who walk or cycle to their main activity each day have a 76% higher chance of achieving the Ministry of Health physical activity guidelines than those who drive cars.

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Home Modification to Reduce Falls – Appears Cost-Effective in NZ

Tuesday, October 10th, 2017 | dayhi34p | 1 Comment

Prof Nick Wilson, Dr Giorgi Kvizhinadze, Dr Nisha Nair, Prof Tony Blakely

We have just published a modelling study on a home safety and modification programme to prevent falls in older people. This work suggests that this intervention could produce considerable health gain and be cost-effective at a health district level in New Zealand. But in this blog we discuss possible implementation options and the desirability of also considering group exercise programmes, which have additional advantages.

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