June 24, 2013
New tool will turn data into action
Auckland University researchers are looking for ways turn health statistics into solutions for Māori health problems.
Andrew Sporle from Ngāti Apa and Rangitane says the three-year Health Research Council-funded project will analyse death records from 1996 onwards and compare them to Census data to identify regional, gender and age-associated differences which point to preventable Māori mortality rates.
He says the project picks up on some of the ideas of the late Dr Eru Pomare to turn existing data into action.
"Part of what we are doing is creating a tool that will automatically analyse some of those data sets, so if someone from a primary health care organisation says 'I want to know what is happening in our area with the most recent data,' they can go onto a website and call up their area and it will say what is happening for a particular age group or gender or how they compare with another region. So we are taking the technical side away and we will make this data analysis tool freely available for those who want to use it," he says.
Mr Sporle says the data should lead to more informed policies and programmes.
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