COVID-19 Health and Wellbeing Survey

The COVID-19 Health and Wellbeing Survey provides information about how New Zealanders are being impacted by COVID-19. This survey is now closed.

Last updated: 1 October 2021

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Purpose

The purpose of the COVID-19 Health and Wellbeing Survey is to support the government’s response to COVID-19.

It is designed to provide regular monitoring and reporting on key areas of interest such as people's:

  • health and wellbeing 
  • worries relating to COVID-19
  • understanding and compliance of the Alert Level rules
  • household financial struggles 

Results are used to understand what additional support and information New Zealanders need around COVID-19.


Details

The COVID-19 Health and Wellbeing Survey re-started on 19 August 2021, less than two days after New Zealand moved to COVID-19 Alert Level 4, and closed on 30 September 2021. It was also in field between 30 March–27 September 2020.

Every day about 300 people, aged 15 years and above, completed a 10-minute phone interview managed by a team from CBG Health Research Limited.


Analysis

The results have been weighted to be representative of the New Zealand adult population, using census data on distributions of ethnicity, age, sex and deprivation.

The results are provisional and should be used with caution. To enable sharing of timely and relevant information, the data cleaning and quality assurance processes have not yet been fully completed. These results may therefore need to be revised in the future. 

Where possible and appropriate, comparisons with previous COVID-19 Health and Wellbeing Survey results have been provided in the dataset. The time periods provided are:

  • the first four weeks of COVID-19 Health and Wellbeing Survey results in 2020 (from 30 March–26 April 2020) when NZ was in Alert Level 4
  • one of the last weeks of surveying in 2020 (the week ending 2 August 2020) when NZ was in Alert Level 1
  • the restart of the COVID-19 Health and Wellbeing Survey in 2021 (from 19–31 August 2021) when NZ was in Alert Level 4
  • the week of 1–7 September 2021, when Auckland was in Alert Level 4 and the rest of the country was in Alert Level 3
  • the week of 8–14 September 2021, when Auckland was in Alert Level 4 and the rest of the country was in Alert Level 2.
  • the week of 15-21 September 2021, when Auckland was in Alert Level 3 and the rest of the country was in Alert Level 2.

Key findings

Provisional key findings from the COVID-19 Health and Wellbeing Survey for the period from 22–28 September 2021, when Auckland was in Alert Level 3 and the rest of the country was in Alert Level 2, are as follows. 

Health and wellbeing

  • 75 percent of New Zealanders reported being somewhat or completely satisfied with their life. This is similar to in 19–31 August 2021 when all of NZ was in Alert Level 4 (76 percent) but lower than in the week ending 2 August 2020 during Alert Level 1 (82 percent).
  • On average, New Zealanders rated their family wellbeing as 7.7 out of 10, with 0 meaning doing extremely badly and 10 meaning doing extremely well. This is similar to in 19–31 August 2021 when all of NZ was in Alert Level 4.
  • 10 percent experienced anxiety or depression symptoms in the past week. This is lower than in 19–31 August 2021 when all of NZ was in Alert Level 4 (15 percent) and higher than in the week ending 2 August 2020 in Alert Level 1 (7 percent).
  • 26 percent of respondents felt lonely at least a little of the time in the past week. 
  • On average, New Zealanders rated their trust in most people as 6.9 out of 10, with 0 meaning not at all and 10 meaning completely. 

Worries relating to COVID-19

  • 31 percent felt strongly nervous or somewhat nervous when they thought about current circumstances. This has decreased since 19–31 August 2021 when all of NZ was in Alert Level 4 (37 percent) but is higher than in the week ending 2 August 2020 when NZ was in Alert Level 1 (22 percent).
  • 45 percent of respondents felt worried about the health of their family members. This has decreased since 19–31 August 2021 when all of NZ was in Alert Level 4 (58 percent). It is higher than in Alert Level 1 in August 2020 (40 percent in the week ending 2 August 2020).
  • 13 percent of adults felt strongly stressed or somewhat stressed about leaving home. This has decreased since 19–31 August 2021 when all of NZ was in Alert Level 4 (20 percent). It is higher than in Alert Level 1 in the week ending 2 August 2020, when it was only 4 percent.
  • 21 percent of respondents were worried about the risk of getting COVID-19. This has decreased since 19–31 August 2021 when all of NZ was in Alert Level 4 (34 percent). It is higher than during the week ending 2 August 2020 when NZ was in Alert Level 1 (15 percent).
  • 74 percent felt strongly or somewhat calm and relaxed during the past week. This is similar to in 19–31 August 2021 when all of NZ was in Alert Level 4 (76 percent) and lower than the week ending 2 August 2020 when NZ was in Alert Level 1 (87 percent).

Understanding and compliance of the Alert Level rules

  • Most respondents (98 percent) found the Alert Level rules clear, very clear or neither clear nor unclear. 
  • 96 percent found the rules around Alert Levels easy, very easy or neither easy nor hard. 

Household financial struggles

  • 8 percent struggled to pay basic living costs, such as for food or accommodation, in the past week. This is similar to in 19–31 August 2021 when NZ was in Alert Level 4 (7 percent).
  • 2 percent of respondents said that their household has relied on special food grants, food banks and food parcels in the past week because there wasn’t enough money for food.

Download the data as a .csv file


Sample

The COVID-19 Health and Wellbeing Survey interviews people who have previously taken part in the New Zealand Health Survey and consented to being recontacted for future research. The New Zealand Health Survey sample was selected using a stratified, multi-stage sampling design.

There are some limitations to the sample used, including small numbers of Asian and Pacific respondents. It’s also possible that people who agree to participate in the COVID-19 Health and Wellbeing Survey would answer the survey questions differently to people who decline to participate. The survey is conducted in English so only respondents who can speak English are able to participate.

Questionnaire

The questionnaire was developed by the Ministry of Health and CBG Health Research Limited. Many of the survey questions use a recall period of 7 days which enables weekly reporting and monitoring of changes.

Read the questionnaire:


Contact

If you have any queries about the COVID-19 Health and Wellbeing Survey, please email [email protected].

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