Virtual Diabetes Register (VDR)

Published online: 26 May 2017

Note: data presented here should be used with caution as a recent revision made to the VDR algorithm has resulted in a reduction in totals. For this reason, it is important that the updated numbers are not compared with numbers derived from any previous version of the VDR. Any comparison may result in artificial and inaccurate trends.

Each year the New Zealand Ministry of Health releases national estimates of the prevalence of diabetes based on the VDR. The VDR is an important tool to monitor prevalence of diabetes and support national and local clinical quality improvements.

The VDR contains data about people suspected as having diabetes, identified through their use of diabetes health services. The VDR uses an algorithm to identify these people in data extracted from inpatient, outpatient, laboratory test and pharmaceutical dispensing data collections. The VDR is collated annually at the end of March and national and regional diabetes prevalence estimates are calculated based on the number of people on the VDR as at 31 December of the previous year. People with diabetes who were deceased and those not enrolled in a PHO were excluded from the totals.

Virtual Diabetes Register 2017 revision

In 2016 the algorithm used to create the VDR was assessed against the Auckland TestSafe repository of test results. As a result, improvements to the algorithm were made in early 2017 to create the latest version of the VDR. A comparison of the numbers from the old VDR and the latest version (new VDR) is shown in the chart below.

Number of people suspected as having diabetes, on the old VDR and the new VDR, 2005–2016

Number of people suspected as having diabetes, on the old VDR and the new VDR, 2005–2016
  Old VDR New VDR
2005 137,815 136,660
2006 147,525 144,747
2007 158,478 154,334
2008 171,025 165,837
2009 182,745 176,389
2010 196,134 187,860
2011 210,759 200,235
2012 224,908 211,591
2013 238,890 220,866
2014 251,478 228,790
2015 260,458 236,073
2016 - 241,463

Note: People who were either not enrolled in a PHO or deceased, as at 31/12 of the relevant year, are excluded.

It is important to note that numbers produced by the old VDR algorithm are now obsolete and should not be used nor compared to the numbers produced by the new VDR algorithm. From now onwards, please use the numbers published here or request updated numbers or datasets from data-enquiries@moh.govt.nz.

Number of people in the Virtual Diabetes Register by DHB of domicile, 2010–2016
DHB of domicile 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Auckland 18,573 19,647 20,657 21,718 22,836 23,867 24,508
Bay of Plenty 9507 9917 10,241 10,433 10,537 10,330 10,391
Canterbury 18,103 18,706 19,467 20,075 20,664 21,261 21,959
Capital and Coast 9393 10,788 11,899 12,436 12,805 13,119 13,350
Counties Manukau 27,845 29,877 32,092 34,430 36,927 39,007 40,266
Hawke's Bay 6797 7080 7494 7865 8025 8181 8370
Hutt Valley 5812 6575 7211 7467 7699 7866 7903
Lakes 4340 4547 4793 4928 5178 5430 5589
MidCentral 6814 7453 7797 7953 8120 8331 8446
Nelson Marlborough 5282 5577 5686 5786 5933 6022 6080
Northland 8515 8908 9605 10,425 10,734 10,844 10,952
South Canterbury 2763 2862 2969 3016 3040 3107 3150
Southern 12,002 12,672 13,206 13,525 13,578 13,804 14,146
Tairāwhiti 2621 2919 3098 3241 3357 3444 3388
Taranaki 6205 6347 6510 6597 6659 6767 6781
Waikato 16,548 17,396 18,125 18,895 19,637 20,406 20,998
Wairarapa 1919 2075 2198 2218 2228 2223 2199
Waitemata 20,296 22,136 23,651 24,959 25,908 27,020 27,796
West Coast 1195 1226 1213 1204 1192 1254 1305
Whanganui 3045 3255 3420 3471 3533 3616 3744
Unknown/Unassigned 285 272 259 224 200 174 142
Total 187,860 200,235 211,591 220,866 228,790 236,073 241,463

Note: People who were either not enrolled in a PHO or deceased, as at 31/12/2016, were excluded.

Source: VDR Dec 2010–2016 (v686)

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