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Frequently asked questions of the Public Health Summer School

Please note: There will NOT be a Public Health Summer School in 2022, but we look forward to returning with a full programme in 2023.

If you would like to be on the early notice list for future updates, please email
Fran Wright

Where is the Public Health Summer School held and how do I get there?


All courses (except Introduction to Pacific Health (Auckland - see below *) will be held at the University of Otago, Wellington campus (next to Wellington Hospital).

Physical Address:
University of Otago, Wellington
23a Mein Street
Newtown, Wellington

The main entrance to our campus is off Mein St. Please come into reception on the ground floor (Level C) and you will be given directions to the Summer School registration desk.

For directions to the Summer School via bus, car or on foot please click here – Map and directions to the University of Otago, Wellington.

Public transport – there are many bus routes that pass very near to our campus, including a number of bus services from the railway station. Buses are frequent at all times of the day. For more information click on the map link above or the bus timetable here.

On your bike – there is also easy cycling to/from the centre city and many suburbs and we have plenty of bike parking in front of the university building.

On foot – with our central location, walking may also be a great option.

Parking – please note if you require car parking, there is very limited car parking in the streets surrounding Mein Street so please allow time to find a park. There is all-day parking in the Wellington Hospital car parks for $10 per day.

From Wellington Hospital - If coming to our University of Otago building from Wellington Hospital, it is approximately a 10-minute walk. From the underground carpark, take the Red lift to level 3, turn left, past Mojo coffee shop (on right) to Ward Support Block (WSB), go past Vibe Café (on left) turn right and you are facing the University doors. Go through and you will be on level C of our building. Walk up the stairs to Summer School reception desk on level D. Or take the orange lift to level 2, turn right and follow the orange line, turn left before the Emergency Department, go up the stairs and continue to Mojo coffee shop then continue as above.

*Introduction to Pacific Health - AUCKLAND and WELLINGTON

This course is being held in both Wellington (3 Feb) and Auckland (5 Feb). The Auckland course will be held at our University of Otago Auckland Centre which is at 385 Queen St Auckland.

Is there accommodation close to the Public Health Summer School?

The University of Otago, Wellington campus is in Newtown, approximately 3km from the CBD. The following accommodation options are within a short walk if you prefer to stay close by.

Southgate Motor Inn
70-72 Riddiford Street
Tel: 64 4 9399292

Ascot Motor Lodge
46 Riddiford Street
Tel: 0800 380004

Who is the Public Health Summer School for?

These short courses are ideally suited for those working in:

  • district health boards
  • government departments
  • local authorities
  • non-governmental organisations
  • public health services
  • primary care organisations

Or also for:

  • anyone who requires an understanding of public health concepts in their work
  • anyone considering postgraduate studies in the public health area

What do Public Health Summer School courses cost?

Most courses cost $300 early bird, $400 after 22 December 2020, per day. 

A 50 per cent discount is also available to full-time students, those unwaged and University of Otago staff.

If your course moves to online delivery due to COVID-19 level changes (see below), the cost will be reduced by $50 for students/staff and $100 for external participants. (So if you paid $300 as an external registration, you will get a $100 refund.)

Can I get a full refund for my course, if needed?

Yes, we are offering full refunds of applicable course fee up until the day of the course (for any reason). If you cannot attend an in-person course due to COVID-related travel restrictions, this refund policy will extend to the day of the course as well.

What happens if COVID-19 levels change?

We will aim to contact you within 24 hours of a level change to advise any changes to your course. Decisions will be made collectively by the PHSS Organising Committee (who will contact you) rather than by individual convenors.

If there are travel/gathering restrictions in place for Wellington then most courses will run online at a reduced rate (see individual Course descriptions for details). If your course moves to online delivery, the cost will be reduced by $50 for students/staff and $100 for external. (So if you paid $300 as an external registration, you will get a $100 refund).

If a course has to switch to online-only delivery and you would prefer not to attend, then you can request a full refund (as above).

Please note that courses will either be run as in-person attendance or an online course: we cannot offer the option for online participation if the course is still running on site. (E.g. if you are from a non-Wellington region with travel restrictions and hence you cannot attend, but the course is still running in-person in Wellington – in this case you can get a full refund of the course fees.)

Are any courses available online?

No, all courses will be delivered in-person in Wellington (plus Auckland for Introduction to Pacific Health).

We have given much consideration as to how courses will be delivered in 2021, given that many people may be unable to commit to travelling. We have found in the past that our participants strongly favour in-person delivery for a full day course and that offering a combined in-person plus online delivery is sub-optimal for both in-person and remote attendees. So our plan is for all courses to be delivered in-person.

However, as per our COVID-19 contingency plan, if we are unable to provide in-person delivery due to future COVID-19 restrictions, we will change delivery to Online for ALL participants.

What are the payment options?

If you are a staff member of the University of Otago:

University of Otago staff must use “University Account Code” as their payment option, unless payment is from a personal fund.

If you are not University of Otago staff:

You can choose to pay your registration fee either by “Credit card” or “Invoice”.

  • Credit card – this is the easiest and fastest way to pay, and you get your registration confirmation/tax invoice/receipt in minutes.
  • Invoice – select this option if you wish to pay by internet banking. Your registration invoice will be sent to the email address provided. All invoice payments must be received prior to the course start date.
  • If you choose the “Invoice" payment option, you will be asked to provide your billing information such as organisation name (legal entity), address and phone number. At this point you can also indicate a purchase order number and/or a person to attention the invoice to. If neither of these are required please tick N/A. Any additional information relating to the payment can be submitted in the “comments” box.

What is the daily schedule?

All courses begin at 9am and finish no later than 5.30pm. There is up to an hour for lunch and short breaks during the morning and afternoon. There will also be a small number of free early evening events as marked on the homepage.

Upon arrival please take the stairs to the first floor, by the Level D Cafe, where you will find the registration desk. Collect your name tag and any course material before being shown to the room.

Is lunch provided?

Lunch, morning and afternoon tea is provided. All food is vegetarian (as part of the Department of Public Health’s commitment to promoting health and sustainability).

PHSS Lunch thumbnail PHSS Lunch thumbnail PHSS Lunch thumbnail

How do I register?

To register for a course please click on this button Register now