Public Health Analysis: Evidence based Public Health

Effective public health action is informed by evidence. The Christchurch Information Team supports public health practice through the provision of best evidence.

The team carries out a range of activities to inform the work of our organisation, the wider health sector, and other partnering organisations, including:

  • literature searches
  • reviews of best practice and evidence
  • evaluation
  • questionnaire/instrument development and design
  • qualitative and quantitative data analysis
  • infectious diseases surveillance
  • information systems design, and
  • data capture and management.

View documents completed by Public Health Analysts at Community and Public Health prior to January 2014.

The Community and Public Health analysts hope the reports and information you access is helpful to you or your organisation.

To give feedback or get more information on Community and Public Health Analysis reports, contact:

Colleen Moore
Ph: +64 3 378 6777
Fax: +64 3 379 6125


2016 Reports

Associations between urban characteristics and non-communicable diseases: Rapid evidence review [1.73MB] New.

Date of Publication: October 2016

Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) are the leading cause of health loss in Aotearoa New Zealand, and contribute to significant inequities. There is substantial opportunity for NCD prevention through effective population health interventions, as many of the risk factors for NCDs are modifiable. The physical (natural and built) and social environment are determinants of health with the potential to impact health and equity through influencing behaviour and safety. Creating urban environments that support health will impact a large number of people, given most of our population lives in urban areas.

Evaluation of a well-being campaign following a natural disaster in Christchurch, New Zealand New.

Date of Publication: August 2016 in the International Journal of Mental Health Promotion

The All Right? campaign was developed as an over-arching mental health promotion campaign following the 2010-2011 earthquake sequence (Christchurch, New Zealand). To our knowledge this campaign is unique in promoting population wide psychosocial well-being following a disaster.

The campaign has achieved a wide reach within the affected population and high levels of agreement from those surveyed who were aware of the campaign that the messages were helpful. Success factors included: strong relationships between key agencies prior to a disaster, local research to inform the use of appropriate language for translating evidence based well-being messages into a local setting, not being marketed as a government message whilst maintaining strong relationships with key agencies.

In addition to the mass appeal of the All Right? campaign, targeted campaigns from the inception would have been beneficial, in particular to reach Māori and Pacific communities. As a result of the evaluation findings, this more specifically focused messaging has been developed.

Evaluation of the adoption and implementation of the Christchurch City Council smokefree social housing policy [2.53Mb PDF] New.

Date of Publication: April 2016

This process evaluation presents findings on the merit, worth, importance and implementation of the Christchurch City Council’s social housing smokefree policy — to inform the future refinement of the programme and to inform the development and implementation of similar partnership-based (Health in All Policies) initiatives.

Third-hand tobacco smoke exposure and implications for public health: A background paper [683Kb PDF]

Date of Publication: January 2016

The negative health effects of smoking and second-hand smoke (SHS) are well established, however, the concept of third-hand tobacco smoke (THS) is an emerging area of interest in public health.

While, in contrast to active smoking and SHS, THS is invisible, it also leads to involuntary exposure to tobacco smoke products. This background paper provides a brief summary of current evidence relating to THS exposure and its implications for public health.

2015 Reports

Local policies to decrease the availability of sugar-sweetened beverages: A background paper [565Kb PDF]

Date of Publication: November 2015

This background paper provides a very brief summary of current evidence relating to the consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) and health outcomes, and current district health board (DHB) and local government policies implemented in New Zealand to decrease SSB availability.

Health Promotion in Tertiary Settings: reducing alcohol-related harm [1.80Mb PDF]

Date of Publication: October 2015

There is general agreement that addressing alcohol-related harm within tertiary settings is an important priority – the impact of alcohol-related harm on individual students and on those around them can be significant. The transition to tertiary study can be challenging and may mean that young people are more vulnerable to misusing alcohol.

This review was completed to inform policy and practice.

Evaluation of the Good One party register [1.32Mb PDF] New,

Date of Publication: September 2015

As part of a Police-led initiative to decrease adverse events resulting from parties in Christchurch, particularly in the Riccarton West area, the Good One party register was set up in February 2014. Good One is a website where anyone can register the details of an upcoming party, which is currently targeted at tertiary students.

This evaluation of the first phase of Good One provides the Working Group with evidence to inform its future planning and the ongoing implementation of the register.

Effectiveness of diet, physical activity and behavioural interventions for weight loss among adults in primary care settings: A review of the literature [2.21Mb PDF]

Date of Publication: June 2015

The purpose of this report is to provide planners and decision makers with a synthesis of best evidence relating to individual-level interventions for weight loss and weight loss management in overweight and obese adult populations.

The investigated interventions are delivered or suitable for delivery in primary care settings or commercial settings.

2014 Reports

Evaluation of the Canterbury under-18 seasonal influenza vaccination programme

Date of Publication: July 2014 in the New Zealand Medical Journal

This report looks at the effectiveness of the Canterbury DHB providing a free influenza vaccine for all children up to the age of 18 living within the area, in response to post-disaster social disruption following the February 2011 earthquakes.

The programme was a strategy explored by the Canterbury DHB to reduce admissions to its hospitals in Christchurch that were extensively damaged by the earthquakes and had significantly reduced capacity as a result.

Evaluation of the Fruit and Vegetable Co-op: Final report of survey results [1.96Mb PDF]

Date of Publication: July 2014

This survey aimed to evaluate the impact of the Fruit and Vegetable Co-op on members, and to provide information to guide Community and Public Health’s future involvement with the Christchurch Fruit and Vegetable Co-op.

The Fruit and Vegetable Co-op is a health promotion partnership between Community and Public Health, the Christchurch Anglican Cathedral, and the communities of Christchurch. The aim of the project is to increase the quantity and variety of fruit and vegetables consumed among participating families by providing low cost fresh fruit and vegetables.

Public Health Implications of Land Use Change and Agricultural Intensification with respect to the Canterbury Plains: A Literature Review [2.37Mb PDF]

Date of Publication: July 2014

Land use change has been occurring rapidly in recent years, both at a global scale and within Canterbury. While there is potential for this change to create wealth – there is also potential for unintended effects which may impair the health of communities.

This review is intended to provide information to help anticipate and avoid negative consequences of land use change. This literature review updates the original version completed in 2010.

Existing on-site wastewater treatment systems assessment in Darfield: Sanitary survey summary report [2.56Mb PDF]

Date of Publication: April 2014

The population of Selwyn District has increased dramatically over the past several years. This district includes communities (such as Darfield) that do not have a reticulated system for wastewater disposal and treatment.

There is a risk to public health if septic plumes from on-site wastewater treatment systems intersect with the groundwater, or if surface ponding of wastewater occurs. Since 2007 Community and Public Health (C&PH) has been raising the concern over wastewater reticulation as community size and/or density increases.

The purpose of this survey was to provide information about the immediate health risks to residents and users by investigating the number of residents having direct contact with effluent via septic tank failure.

School breakfast programmes for adolescents: Literature review [972Kb PDF]

Date of Publication: April 2014

Regular breakfast consumption by adolescents is related to greater nutrient intake and health-promoting behaviours; improved academic performance, cognitive function, and cardiometabolic measures; and healthy weight maintenance.

This literature review investigated the outcomes of free school breakfast provision to adolescents and the features of the most effective programmes.

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