MNZEH Newsletter #2
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The project team for the Environmental Health Indicators Programme (EHIP) welcomes you to our second newsletter on our work in monitoring New Zealand’s environmental health (MNZEH). The programme has three core components:
  • Conducting research into the effect of environmental factors on the health of animal and human populations
  • Offering face-to-face and online teaching at the undergraduate and postgraduate level, and training involving short courses
  • A ‘consultancy’ service providing data and analytical services, and dissemination of
    fit-for-purpose information products
The MNZEH comprises of a suite of integrated concept-driven surveillance systems. Where possible all data and information from the systems are available visually in a variety of map and graph formats at the website CPHROnline ( -which is currently being updated), or in factsheets at The surveillance systems are: 

Update on the Roadshows of the Environmental Health Indicators Programme

The project team have now completed their Roadshows to the Public Health Units around New Zealand.
Commencing in January with Regional Public Health, Wellington and finishing with Northland DHB, Whangarei in early June CPHR staff have thoroughly enjoyed getting out to the regions and talking about the EHI work with users.
At the roadshows we presented CPHR’s work in the EHI programme.  This included an introduction to the indicators work and demonstrations of the EHI website and the online interactive mapping tool for a range of health data, CPHROnline.  These talks were relevant to a wide audience; thanks to those units who encouraged their colleagues from local councils and the wider DHB to attend.  We received useful feedback which we will incorporate into our future work.
An afternoon session was held to train Health Protection Officers, Medical Officers of Health and clerical staff in the use of the Hazardous Substances Disease and Injury Reporting Tool (HSDIRT).  This is a tool which allows general practitioners to electronically notify public health units cases of hazardous substances injury using a short, secure web-based form.  The public health unit also enters data before sending to CPHR for surveillance.
Thank you to the Public Health Units who have hosted us, we look forward to continuing to work with you on environmental health.
Presentations will be available on the EHI website in the coming weeks.  A video recording of the HSDIRT training will also be available for those who were unable to attend the session, please contact Melissa Vernall at to request this.

Meet the Technical Advisory Group

Professor David Briggs is emeritus professor in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at Imperial College London.  A geographer and environmental scientist by background, he has researched extensively in the areas of environmental modelling, exposure assessment, risk analysis and indicator development for policy support, especially in relation to air pollution. Over recent years, he has been principal investigator on more than 30 research council, government, industry  and EU-funded research projects, including studies on air pollution, mobile phone masts, powerlines, multiple deprivation and pesticides.   He has also been a regular consultant to the World Health Organisation . He retired in July 2009, and emigrated 4 days later to North Island, New Zealand.
Frances Graham is a senior advisor in the Environmental and Border Health Team of the Ministry of Health.  Since joining the Ministry of Health in 2003 she has worked on a variety of projects as they relate to environmental health including environmental health indicators.  These have included hazardous substances, air quality, sewage and solid waste management issues, contaminated sites, biosecurity, sustainable management including urban sustainability, climate change (both mitigation and adaptation), substandard housing and other built environment related issues including early childhood centres, transport and other environmental health issues. 
In addition to her senior advisory role within the Ministry, Frances is also enrolled part time in a PhD (public health - Wellington School of Medicine – University of Otago) in environmental epidemiology focusing on the environmental risks of legionellosis.  

Dr. Donald Schopflocher is a statistician-methodologist specializing in population health and public health surveillance. Trained as a research Psychologist focusing on personality and psychological measurement, he obtained a PhD from the University of Alberta in 1993. Starting in 1995, he worked as a biostatistician for Alberta Ministry of Health and Wellness. In 2006, he became Director of Research at the Institute of Health Economics. He is currently Associate Professor, University of Alberta, jointly appointed to the Centre for Health Promotion, School of Public Health, and to the Faculty of Nursing, 

More TAG Member introductions will feature in the next MNZEH Newsletter.
Paul Brown is a Principal Statistician in Statistics New Zealand. He  has recently been assigned the role of Respondent Advocate, with responsibility for representing  the interests of survey respondents  and ensuring that compliance burdens are minimised.
In the 1990s Paul managed the analysis and monitoring group in the NZ Public Health Commission where he had responsibility, among other things, for a significant part of NZ’s public health surveillance programme .
Paul has a Bachelor of Science degree in statistical mathematics from the University of Canterbury and a Bachelor of Arts Honours degree in sociology from Victoria University of Wellington. He is a former office-holder and current member of the Population Association of NZ and a long-standing member of the NZ Statistical Association.
Associate Professor Caroline Miller is a former senior planning practitioner who became a planning academic in 1995 in the Resource & Environmental Planning Programme in the School of People, Environment & Planning. More recently she had been involved in reconnecting health and planning and the use of HIA in planning. She is the author of three books, including Implementing Sustainability: The New Zealand Experience, the only critical assessment of the Resource Management Act, and a number of book chapters and refereed journal articles. Since 2007 she has been a Councillor and now Board member of the New Zealand Planning Institute, the professional body for planners in New Zealand.
Dr Jill Mckenzie is a Public Health Medicine Specialist and designated as a Medical Officer of Health for the Greater Wellington and Manawatu/Whanganui regions.  She works in both Regional Public Health and MidCentral Public Health Services and leads a number of environmental health portfolios within this work.  Public Health Services both provide data to inform environmental health indicators and are users of the indicators.  Public Health Services can use indicators to provide an evidence base for prioritisation of work and effectiveness of interventions, and to facilitate communication with stakeholders (including the community) around public health issues.  Her interest particularly lies in ensuring New Zealand has a robust set of environmental health indicators to support the work of Public Health Services and to inform our communities of environmental health issues.
Dr Donald Hannah has worked in environmental health science and regulation for over 30 years and brings a wide range of experience to the EHI programme.  He was a research leader at ESR (and DSIR prior to that) and joined the new Environmental Risk Management Authority in 1997 as Science and Research Manager.  He retired from the Environmental Protection Authority in 2013 after building a career in bringing sound science to environmental decision-making.  He has represented New Zealand in a range of international fora including the OECD Environmental Health and Safety programme and several United Nations treaties and negotiations.

Professor Karen Witten is the Associate Director of the Social and Health Outcomes Research and Evaluation (SHORE) and Whariki Research Centre in the School of Public Health at Massey University. Karen’s primary research interests centre on interactions between the physical characteristics of cities and neighbourhoods and the social relationships, transport choices and wellbeing of the people living in them. Much of her current research concerns children’s independent mobility and physical activity in inner city and suburban neighbourhoods. She is a social scientist and Professor of Public Health. 
Janine Cameron is a Policy Analyst at the Environmental Protection Authority.  She studied Environmental Management at the University of Otago in Dunedin, with a focus on the ecological and urban impacts of climate change.
At the EPA Janine works with environmental legislation, in particular ensuring that the laws are working to protect people and the environment in New Zealand from the adverse effects of hazardous substances.

Dr Nick Kim's Background is in applied environmental chemisty, and his main research interests relate to the diffuse contamination of natural and built envionments. Since completing his doctorate at the University of Canterbury and postdoc at ANU, he has worked as both a University academic (at Waikato 1991-2001 and Massey from
2012-), and a scientific advisor to local government (at the Waikato Regional Council 2002-2011). He is currently a Senior Lecturer in INFHH, and coordinates courses in toxicology, environmental chemistry, and air quality.

Seminar and Short Course: Professor Allan Smith

Professor of Epidemiology, MD, PhD
School of Public Health in the University of California, Berkeley

A seminar on recent findings from ecologic, cross-sectional, case-control and cohort studies on arsenic in drinking water in several counties: an illustration of global environmental epidemiology research in action.

When: 18th July, 2013
Time: 2 - 5pm

Short Course:
When: 18th July, 2013
Time:  9am - 5pm
Cost: $200

Where: Centre for Public Health Research
             Level One, 102 Adelaide Road
RSVP: Clare Scott (04-380-0602)

Nick's Cartoon
Copyright © *|2013|* *|Centre for Public Health Research|*, All rights reserved.
*|Environmental Health Newsletter Issue 2|*

Our mailing address is:
*|Centre of Public Health research, Level 1, 102 Adelaide Road, Wellington, New Zealand. 6021| 

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