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Public health news from the University of Otago

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Urgent need to tackle smoking rates in Pacific adults and youth

Jude Ball thumbanil

Thursday 30 September 2021

New Zealand needs to take urgent action to reduce smoking in Pacific adults and youth if the country is to achieve its goal of reducing the number of smokers to less than five per cent of the population by 2025 according to a new report.

A road map to ending diesel vehicle pollution

Professor Nick Wilson 2021 thumb

Friday 17 September 2021

Researchers have developed a road map to accelerate the removal of light diesel vehicles, including cars, utes and vans, from New Zealand roads in a quest to clear the air.

Dual treatment increases risk of heart attack – study

Jack Dummer and Lianne Parkin thumb

Friday 13 August 2021

People using two different inhalers for common chronic lung diseases are more than 50 per cent more likely to have a heart attack than those on just one, new University of Otago-led research reveals.

New Zealand housing lacking basic amenities, new report finds

Helen Viggers thumbnail

Thursday 13 May 2021

Five per cent of New Zealand houses lack at least one of six basic amenities including drinkable tap water, electricity, a toilet, and a kitchen sink, a new report from the He Kāinga Oranga Housing and Health Research Programme at the University of Otago, Wellington has found.

Researchers welcome Smokefree 2025 Action Plan

Janet-Hoek-thumb

Thursday 15 April 2021

Researchers from the University of Otago’s ASPIRE 2025 Research Centre, which carries out research to support the Smokefree 2025 goal, have welcomed and endorsed the action plan for achieving a Smokefree Aotearoa by 2025 released by Associate Health Minister Dr Ayesha Verrall today.

Pump up the volume on quality school PE, researchers urge

Dr Anja Mizdrak June 2020 thumbnail

Friday 12 March 2021

Increasing the amount of time schools devote to physical education each week could dramatically reduce the number of children who are doing only minimal levels of exercise, researchers from the University of Otago, Wellington and Sport New Zealand have found.

We must have a better plan for the next pandemic, say Otago researchers

Dr Amanda Kvalsvig March 2021 thumbnail

Wednesday 10 March 2021

Aotearoa New Zealand’s next pandemic plan needs a completely different approach to our previous plan that was focussed on influenza, say researchers from the University of Otago, Wellington in a new article that identifies key lessons from the COVID-19 response for managing future major outbreaks and pandemics.

Private health patients costing public system $11.5m a year

Dr Erin Penno thumb

Wednesday 24 February 2021

Taxpayers are footing an annual bill of up to $11.5 million – the cost of 760 hip replacements - for patients who need public hospital care after private inpatient treatment, a new University of Otago study reveals.

Women supporting women in making change to energy poverty

Kim and Isobel Thumbnail Image

Thursday 18 February 2021

When Dr Kim O’Sullivan returned to her high school to speak with students as part of her post-doctoral research; it was the beginning of a new chapter for (then) high school student Isobel Harris Clark.

Targeted health messaging needed in era of vaping, researchers say

Janet-Hoek-thumb

Wednesday 27 January 2021

Health authorities should develop targeted health messages for vaping product and e-liquid packaging to encourage smokers to switch from cigarettes to e-cigarettes and to prevent non-smokers from taking up vaping, a researcher at the University of Otago, Wellington says.

Ones to Watch: Rebekah Amitrano

Rebekah Thumbnail

Wednesday 27 January 2021

“I’ve known for a long time that I want to do something that helps people and I decided law was a way of helping many people at once.”

Care urged before banning people entering NZ from the UK

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Wednesday 13 January 2021

The Government should be careful about banning people entering New Zealand from specific countries based on the presence of variants of the virus that causes COVID-19, given most countries are not testing for variants, University of Otago experts say.

Marsden Grants for Wellington research

Health sciences banner thumb

Monday 14 December 2020

Three researchers at the University of Otago, Wellington, have received grants from the Marsden Fund to conduct research into topics ranging from tissue grafting to youth substance use to energy use in a warming world.

Eliminating COVID-19: what the world can learn from NZ and Taiwan

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Thursday 22 October 2020

Both Taiwan and New Zealand have successfully eliminated COVID-19 with world-leading pandemic responses. By taking a particularly proactive approach, Taiwan’s response was probably the most effective and least disruptive of any country’s, researchers say.