PHONZ - Public Health Observatory of NZ

PHONZ Inc logo

The Public Health Observatory of New Zealand (PHONZ) provides a forum for people interested in health intelligence to collaborate, exchange ideas, and meet others locally, nationally and internationally with similar interests. Its mission is to be a repository for health intelligence news, work, etc.

The New Zealand health system continues to collect and collate vast quantities of data at an increasing rate. These data are being turned into information at great speed through various types of analysis, the proliferation of dashboards, and other visual aids (graphs, tables etc.). These stages are essentially computer or machine-driven and underpin much of our current decision-making. 

In contrast, our health system has a limited and fragmented health intelligence (i.e. human) capacity and capability. Intelligence involves the interpretation, communication and dissemination of information. PHONZ was established to address these deficiencies. It provides NZ with the opportunity to move beyond data and information to have intelligence-drive decision making and policy development. Only through the evaluation of intelligence based decisions and policies will we enhance our knowledge and understanding of the health system and improve the health outcomes and status of all New Zealanders.

The PHONZ committee is:

  • Chair: Barry Borman, Professor of Epidemiology, Director of Environmental Health Intelligence NZ, Massey University (
  • Secretary: Tim Hopley, Principal Advisor, Environmental Health, National Public Health Service, Te Whatu Ora-Health NZ (
  • Treasurer: Corina Grey, Deputy Secretary, Data and Insights, Ministry for Pacific Peoples (
  • Chief Information Officer: Patrick Hipgrave, Senior Intelligence Analyst, Environmental Health Intelligence NZ, Massey University (
  • Ruth Cunningham, Public Health Physician, Population Health Gain team, Systems Improvement and Innovation Directorate, Health NZ-Te Whatu Ora (
  • James Greenwell, Chief Data Scientist, Data and Insights, Ministry for Pacific Peoples (
  • Peter Himona, Senior Analyst, Māori Health Insights, Māori Health, Ministry of Health (
  • Ron King, Intelligence and Surveillance Specialist, Health NZ-Te Whatu Ora (
  • Dyfed Thomas, Technical Lead - Population Health Gain, Service Improvement and Innovation, Health NZ-Te Whatu Ora (
  • Chris Skelly, Analytical Programme Manager, Department of Health and Social Care, UK (

Please don't hesitate to contact any of the Committee if you have suggestions and comments about PHONZ. 

 If you would like to become a member of PHONZ, or be updated about future PHONZ events please enter your details here.

Recordings of the presentations at previous PHONZ conferences are available on this website

Back to Top