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Source: New Zealand Ministry of Health

The Annual Data Explorer provides a snapshot of the health of New Zealanders through the publication of key indicators on health behaviours, health status and access to health care for both adults and children.

The Annual Data Explorer shows 2018/19 results from the continuous New Zealand Health Survey, with comparisons to earlier surveys. Results are available by gender, age group, ethnic group and neighbourhood deprivation.

Published data can be downloaded from the New Zealand Health Survey Annual Data Explorer as a .csv file, or as a PDF using the ‘print view’ function.

If you have any queries please email healthsurvey@health.govt.nz.

Please ensure you use the latest and most comprehensive annual results. We have made changes to previously published data, including correcting errors in child body size data for years 2015/16, 2016/17 and 2018/19. The errors are described in the latest Methodology Report.

Overview of key findings

Health behaviours and risk factors

Current smoking

  • 14.2% of adults were current smokers. The smoking rate has been decreasing over time, down from 18.2% in 2011/12.
  • There has been no change in the smoking prevalence amongst those aged 35–44 and 65–74 years since 2011/12.
  • 34.0% of Māori adults were current smokers, down from 40.2% in 2011/12.
  • 24.4% of Pacific adults were current smokers, which has not changed since 2011/12.
  • Adults living in the most socioeconomically deprived areas were 3.6 times as likely to be current smokers as people living in the least deprived areas, after adjusting for age, gender and ethnic differences.

Hazardous drinking

  • One in five adults (20.0%) drank alcohol in a way that could harm themselves or others.
  • 6.3% of those aged 15–17 years had engaged in hazardous drinking in the past year.
  • Men were more than twice as likely to be hazardous drinkers as women, after adjusting for age.
  • Māori were 1.6 times as likely to be hazardous drinkers than non-Māori, after adjusting for age and gender.
  • Although adults living in the most socioeconomically deprived areas were less likely to have consumed alcohol in the past year as those living in the least deprived areas, they were 1.2 times as likely to be hazardous drinkers as adults in the least deprived areas, after adjusting for age, gender and ethnicity.

Obesity

  • The prevalence of obesity among adults aged 15+ was 30.9%, which corresponds to an estimated 1.22 million adults. This prevalence has increased from 28.6% in 2011/12, but has remained relatively stable since 2012/13.
  • 11.3% of children aged 2–14 years were obese. This rate has not changed significantly since 2011/12.
  • In adults, Māori were 1.8 times as likely to be obese as non-Māori, and Pacific adults were 2.5 times as likely to be obese as non-Pacific adults, after adjusting for age and gender.
  • In children, Māori were 1.6 times as likely to be obese as non-Māori, and Pacific children were 3.3 times as likely to be obese as non-Pacific children, after adjusting for age and gender.
  • Adults and children living in the most socioeconomically deprived neighbourhoods were significantly more likely to be obese than those living in the least deprived neighbourhoods, after adjusting for age, gender and ethnic differences.

Go to Improving the health of New Zealanders find out what’s being done to reduce smoking, hazardous drinking and obesity rates.

Health status

Self-rated health

  • 86.2% of adults reported their health to be ‘good’, ‘very good’ or ‘excellent’, a significant decrease from 87.5% in 2017/18 and 89.3% in 2011/12.
  • The percentage of adults reporting ‘good’, ‘very good’ or ‘excellent’ health has decreased since 2011/12 in adults aged 15–64 years, yet has increased amongst those aged 75 years and older over the same time period.
  • Māori and Pacific adults were slightly less likely to report that their health was ‘good’, ‘very good’ or ‘excellent’ than non-Māori and non-Pacific adults, respectively, after adjusting for age and gender.
  • Those living in the most socioeconomically deprived areas were also less likely to report ‘good’, ‘very good’ or ‘excellent’ health compared to those living in the least deprived areas, after adjusting for age, gender and ethnicity.
  • 98.2% of parents rated their child’s health as ‘good’, ‘very good’ or ‘excellent’, which has not changed significantly since 2011/12.  There were no differences in parent-rated health by ethnicity, gender or level of deprivation.

Psychological distress

  • 8.2% of adults had experienced psychological distress in the past four weeks, up from 4.5% in 2011/12.
  • Women were around 1.8 times as likely as men to have experienced psychological distress in the last four weeks.
  • The prevalence of psychological distress in young adults aged 15–24 was significantly higher than in adults aged 25 and over (14.5% compared to 4.2–8.7%).
  • The prevalence of psychological distress varied by ethnic group: Māori (13.7%), Pacific (12.4%), European/Other (8.0%) and Asian (5.8%).
  • People living in the most socioeconomically deprived areas were 2.1 times as likely to experience psychological distress as people living in the least deprived areas, after adjusting for age, gender and ethnicity. 

Go to Improving the health of New Zealanders to find out what’s being done to improve mental health.

Access to health care

Unmet need for GP due to cost

  • 13.4% of adults reported not visiting a GP due to cost in the past year, down from 14.9% in 2017/18.
  • Only 1.8% of children did not visit a GP due to cost in the past year, down from 4.7% in 2011/12. 
  • Since 2014/15, the rate of unmet need for GP services due to cost has decreased from 8.0% to 1.5% in those aged 6–12 years. The Zero Fees initiative was extended beyond children aged 0–5 to include those aged 6–12 years in July 2015, and then to under-14s on 1 December 2018.
  • Pacific children were 4.3 times as likely as non-Pacific children to experience unmet need due to cost, after adjusting for age and gender.

Unfilled prescription due to cost

  • 5.3% of adults reported not collecting a prescription due to cost in the past year, down from 6.6% in 2017/18 and 7.2% in 2011/12.
  • 2.0% of children had an unfilled prescription due to cost in the past year, down from 3.0% in 2017/18 and 6.6% in 2011/12. Since July 2015, prescriptions have been free for children aged under 13 years, and this was extended to children under 14 on 1 December 2018.
  • Pacific and Māori adults were more than twice as likely as non-Pacific and non-Māori adults, respectively, to not have collected a prescription due to cost, after adjusting for age and gender. This was also the case for Pacific and Māori children compared to non-Pacific and non-Māori children, respectively.
  • Both adults and children in the most deprived areas were more than four times as likely to not collect a prescription due to cost as those living in the least deprived areas, after adjusting for age, gender, and ethnicity.

Go to Improving the health of New Zealanders to find out what’s being done to improve access to primary health care.

Oral health

  • 78.4% of adults reported their oral health to be ‘good’, ‘very good’ or ‘excellent’.
  • 93.6% of parents rated their child’s oral health as ‘good’, ‘very good’ or ‘excellent’.
  • Most children (82.1%) visited a dental health care worker in the past year, up from 78.6% in 2011/12.
  • Nearly half of adults (46.6%) with natural teeth visited a dental health care worker in the past year, down from 48.9% in 2011/12.

Go to Improving the health of New Zealanders to find out what’s being done to improve oral health.

Reports from previous years

Data from previous years has been incorporated into the latest version of the data explorer. To access the reports from previous years, see our Library Catalogue.

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