Accessibility Skip to Global Navigation Skip to Local Navigation Skip to Content Skip to Search Skip to Site Map Menu

Dr Viliami Puloka, Department of Public Health

Dr (MD), MPH

Research Fellow

Teaches PUBH739 Special Topic: Introduction to Pacific Public Health

Contact details


Research interests and activities

Dr Viliami Puloka is a Research Fellow in the Health Promotion and Policy Research Unit, Department of Public Health, University of Otago, Wellington. He is also a Senior Health Promotion Strategist specialising in Pacific Health with the Health Promotion Forum of New Zealand.

Viliami supports and facilitates Pacific research in New Zealand and in the Pacific. His vast experience and network in the Pacific region allows for effective and meaningful engagement with Pacific communities. He has a special interest in diabetes and obesity and believes “Diabetes is the Face of NCD in the Pacific”.

He led the fight against non-communicable diseases with the Pacific Community (SPC) supporting the 22 Pacific Island countries and Territories. He was the head and team leader of the Healthy Pacific Lifestyle Unit for almost a decade before moving to New Zealand in 2014. Before that, Viliami worked as a clinician, as well as public health practitioner in Tonga.


Robinson A., Hulme-Moir S., Puloka V., Smith M., Stanley J. and Signal L. (2017). Housing as a determinant of Tongan children’s health: innovative methodology using wearable cameras. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 14, 1170. doi: 10.3390/ijerph14101170

Puloka, V. Domestic violence in Vava’u, Tonga Island. (1994) Pacific Health Dialog. 1(2):78-79.

Lower, T., Nauan, B., Abel, M., Ake, M., Puloka, V., & Tiban, K. (2005) Curbing the tide non communicable disease in the Pacific. Secretariat of the Pacific Community Publication.

Puloka. V. Chapter on Tonga. Cross Cultural Caring: A Handbook for Health Care Professions in Hawaii. John A Burn Medical School, University of Hawaii Press, 1980.