The Sponsored Data initiative allows the public to access key health sector websites via mobile phone without incurring data use charges.
For some New Zealanders, the cost of mobile data can be a barrier to accessing essential health and wellbeing information and digital health services. Those who cannot access information and services are often those with the highest needs.
Sponsored Data removes this barrier by providing free access to key health sector websites for anyone using the Spark, Skinny, Vodafone, 2degrees, Slingshot or Orcon mobile networks. All mobile data charges for content hosted on these websites are automatically charged back to the Ministry of Health.
This ensures Kiwis won’t incur mobile data charges when they access essential health information and resources.
How do I access a sponsored website?
If your mobile phone is connected to the Spark, Skinny, Vodafone, 2degrees, Slingshot or Orcon networks, all you need to do is make sure your mobile data is turned on before you enter the address of the sponsored website into the web browser on your mobile device.
Sponsored data is available both for pre-pay users and those on monthly plans. However, it is not available if your device is set to global roaming, if you are using a mobile network outside of New Zealand, or if your mobile plan is connected to a mobile network that is not participating in the programme. The Ministry is looking at opportunities to expand the number of telecommunications providers.
What data usage is sponsored?
Most content on a Sponsored Data website is free to access from your mobile device if you are connected to a participating mobile network. All websites included within the Sponsored Data initiative have reviewed their content to minimise the amount of externally hosted content, but on occasion, some minor elements may not load for users with no data.
Which websites have sponsored data?
The focus of the Sponsored Data initiative is on websites that provide key health information, support your mental health and wellbeing, or allow you to access digital health services.
The following websites have been included within the initiative as at 1 November 2022:
The Māori Health Authority
Health New Zealand
|www.health.govt.nz||Ministry of Health website with a wide range of information to help New Zealanders manage their health|
|https://covid19.health.nz||Ministry of Health website providing clear advice for people with COVID-19 and their contacts.|
|www.covid19.govt.nz||A government website that brings together everything New Zealanders need to know about COVID-19 and how the government is responding.|
|www.healthnavigator.org.nz||A digital front door for accessing information about health topics, medicines, healthy living and health services.|
|www.depression.org.nz||Information and resources to help New Zealanders recognise and understand depression and anxiety.|
|www.thelowdown.co.nz||Information and resources to help young New Zealanders recognise and understand depression or anxiety.|
|www.safegambling.org.nz||Support and information for New Zealanders who have a gambling problem or are concerned about someone else’s gambling.|
|www.managemyhealth.co.nz||Portal for accessing digital health services.|
|www.health365.co.nz||Portal for accessing digital health services.|
|www.allright.org.nz||Information and resources to help New Zealanders manage their mental health.|
|www.myexperience.health.nz||Health Quality and Safety Commission New Zealand site that provides information and resources to New Zealanders.|
|www.plunket.org.nz||Plunket New Zealand site that provides advice and support for the health and wellbeing of tamariki under-five and their whānau.|
|www.quitstrong.nz||For people who are looking to quit smoking and those who support them.|
|www.smallsteps.org.nz||Small Steps are digital tools, developed by Te Hiringa Hauora in partnership with Clearhead. The Small Steps website is a place where people of Aotearoa can take small steps on their journey to improve wellbeing. Whether you’re here to maintain wellness, find relief, or get help for yourself, friends or whānau, we’re here with you, for you - he waka eke noa.|
|www.justathought.co.nz||Just a Thought offers evidence-based Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) online and is designed for people with mild-to-moderate symptoms of anxiety and depression. CBT teaches people how to control their emotions, thoughts and behaviour to improve their mental health.|
Karawhiua is a unifying campaign for whānau, hapū, iwi, and Māori communities to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.Karawhiua is led by Te Puni Kōkiri (Ministry for Māori Development), co-delivered by Te Hiringa Hauora (Health Promotion Agency) and supported by the Ministry of Health and the Unite Against COVID-19 teams.
1737 offers a website, text and chat service for anyone feeling stressed, worried, down, or needing tautoko (support).
The Gambling Helpline is a 24-hour helpline for those worried about gambling or the gambling of others.
Auckland Regional Public Health Service
Will any other websites be included?
Many other health websites and apps would like to participate in the Sponsored Data programme, but several constraints mean that it is not viable to expand the programme in its current format. With many other government departments also looking to introduce or expand similar programmes, it has been decided to phase out the Sponsored Data programme and replace it with an updated solution.
Detailed information will be available on the replacement programme in due course.
How do I get my website included?
We encourage organisations that are interested in being in the programme to contact us at [email protected].