Our goal is to provide the knowledge and skills to improve the health of all New
Zealanders, by focusing on factors that affect the wellbeing of entire
populations. The school’s expertise covers all aspects of primary care, health
services, and public health.
Based at the Tämaki Campus, the School includes the following sections: General Practice & Primary Care,
Health Systems, Audiology, Pacific Health, Social & Community Health,
and Epidemiology & Biostatistics. In addition, the School houses the Clinical Trials Research Unit,
Te Kupenga Hauora Mäori, and the Centre for Longitudinal Studies.
Four things distinguish the School of Population Health: its focus on factors that affect the health
of whole populations, the range of skills and experience amongst the staff - these
extend across the spectrum of primary care, community health, health services and
public health, the size of the school (eight sections, 340 staff, over 1,000 students)
and its location.
The school is fully contained in a new, purpose-built space on the Tāmaki Campus
of The University of Auckland. The building was officially opened in June 2004.
It was designed specifically to meet the needs of the school, and features maximum
use of natural light and ventilation, with large shared open spaces indoors and
outside. It has been designed to maximise interaction and collaboration.
Fundamental to the work of the school is a conviction that university teaching is
best located in a research-rich environment, an appreciation that the causes of
ill-health (and therefore openings for intervention) occur at all levels of complexity
from the global to the molecular, and recognition of the Treaty of Waitangi as the
founding document of New Zealand.
The school's core activities include:
- investigating the major causes of ill-health and health inequalities in New Zealand
- developing and testing better means of preventing disease, disability and injury
- examining the provision of healthcare and exploring ways in which health systems can be strengthened
- working with the health workforce to find ways of gaining better health outcomes for populations
- working with communities to enable them to develop resources and strategies to improve their health and well-being.
While the primary focus lies on health areas of special interest and significance
for Auckland and New Zealand, the school has strong links internationally, and in
particular with researchers and health providers around the Pacific.
The Head of the School, Professor Ngaire Kerse
says the concept of an entire school specifically focused
on the needs of population health is unique in this country.
"Nothing on this scale has been done before in New Zealand. But we are aware that
as our population profile changes, new disease patterns are placing heavy strains
on health services. Fresh approaches are needed if we are to do better at saving
lives and improving health. I see the school playing a vital role as a generator
of ideas and evidence that will have impacts locally and internationally."
The School of Population Health is located at north entrance, 261 Morrin Rd,
Tāmaki Campus, Glen Innes.