COVID-19 and National Immunisation Programme research projects

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About the research projects

Researchers from across New Zealand have received funding from the Ministry of Health to undertake research into the ongoing impacts of COVID-19 and future pandemic responses. The research projects will show how whānau, communities and the health system responded to the COVID-19 pandemic and vaccine rollout, and provide insights into things such as long COVID, childhood immunisation and the pandemic’s overall impacts. This will be used to inform future planning.


Funded projects

Child vaccine hesitancy: Predictors of parents' COVID-19 vaccine uptake for their children, impact on vaccine uptake of the national immunisation schedule, and translational findings for equitable immunisation outcomes among children in Aotearoa New Zealand

Identifying factors associated with parents' willingness to vaccinate their children against COVID-19 and other vaccine-preventable disease, providing evidence-backed recommendations for an equitable National Immunisation Programme.

Principal Investigator: Dr Kate Prickett, Victoria University of Wellington Te Herenga Waka

Clearing the air: Reducing COVID-19 transmission through increased ventilation

Understanding how the risk of COVID-19 infection in buildings occupied by particularly vulnerable people (young children and the elderly) can be reduced by implementing low-cost options to improve ventilation.

Principal Investigator: Dr Ian Longley, NIWA Taihoro Nukurangi

COVID-19 Vaccine Evaluation (COVE) in Aotearoa New Zealand

Using COVID-19 data analyses to inform improvements in the COVID-19 vaccination programme, including how readily usable information and new processes will improve the response to COVID-19 and future vaccination programmes.

Principal Investigator: Professor Colin Simpson, Victoria University of Wellington Te Herenga Waka

Does the increased attention to COVID-19 vaccine-related side effects change reporting behaviour for a comparable adult vaccine?

Understanding if influenza vaccine reporting behaviour has been influenced by the COVID-19 vaccination programme to identify whether targeted safety messages could be developed for specific demographic groups.

Principal Investigators: Professor Rhiannon Braund and Professor Michael Tatley, University of Otago Te Whare Wānanga o Otāgo

Examining vaccine effectiveness of two and three doses of Comirnaty mRNA vaccine during the 2022 Omicron wave in Aotearoa

Providing insight into the effectiveness of the NZ COVID-19 vaccine schedule, particularly for Māori, Pasifika and other priority populations at higher risk of COVID-19 despite vaccination.

Principal Investigators: Dr Anna Howe and Dr Matthew Hobbs, University of Auckland Waipapa Taumata Rau

Impact of COVID-19 on childhood vaccine uptake and ways forward for equitable immunisation services

Analysing the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on routine childhood immunisation uptake to understand which children are missing out and make recommendations for equitable routine immunisation services.

Principal Investigator: Professor Gail Pacheco, Auckland University of Technology Te Wānanga Aronui o Tāmaki Makau Rau

Impact of the COVID-19 Delta-Omicron outbreak on the health and psychosocial wellbeing of New Zealanders living in aged residential care

Understanding the impact of the COVID-19 Delta-Omicron outbreak on the health and psychosocial wellbeing of New Zealanders living in aged residential care.

Principal Investigator: Dr Gary Cheung, University of Auckland Waipapa Taumata Rau

Impact of COVID-19 on Pacific peoples’ vaccination beliefs and behaviours, including Pacific COVID-19 + Well Child immunisation rates

Understanding the impact of COVID-19 on Pacific people's vaccination beliefs, attitudes and behaviours to better inform policy, practice and new activations for improving Pacific people's immunisation rates.

Principal Investigator: Associate-Professor Teuila Percival, Moana Research

LOGIC study: LOnG term health Impact of Covid-19: Waikato Hospital Cohort

Understanding of the incidence, duration, severity, and risk factors for Post-COVID Syndrome and other mental and physical health problems and disability after admission to hospital with COVID-19 during the Omicron outbreak, and assessment of the healthcare requirements, costs, and personal impact of these outcomes.

Principal Investigator: Dr Cat Chang, Te Whatu Ora Health New Zealand

Māori Solutions for Global Problems: Ngā Hua Akoranga, Learning from MIHI Māori Mobile Vaccination Programme to Achieve Equity

Utilising the MIHI Mobile Vaccine clinic as a case study and a backdrop to evaluate the impact of governmental decision-making on the design, development and roll-out of a kaupapa Māori vaccine clinic.

Principal Investigator: Dr Maira Patu, University of Otago Te Whare Wānanga o Otāgo

Pacific Contribution to the NZ Covid-19 Response – Strengths, Weaknesses and Missed Opportunities

Investigating the impacts of Covid-19 on Pasifika peoples utilising talanoa methods with Pasifika communities and providers to inform equitable national responses to future pandemics.

Principal Investigator: Associate Professor Sir Colin Tukuitonga, University of Auckland Waipapa Taumata Rau, Pasifika Medical Association and The Fono

Post-Marketing safety monitoring of COVID-19 vaccines in NZ populations – A gold standard

Applying the World Health Organisation global vaccine safety blueprint to the New Zealand context.

Principal Investigator: Associate Professor Helen Petousis-Harris, University of Auckland Waipapa Taumata Rau

The Burden of Long Covid in Aotearoa New Zealand: Establishing a Registry

Establishing a Long COVID registry, estimating the clinical, quality of life and economic impacts of Long COVID in Aotearoa New Zealand, and providing a means to continually monitor health outcomes and inequities.

Principal Investigator: Professor Paula Lorgelly, University of Auckland Waipapa Taumata Rau

The impact of COVID-19 vaccination on disease burden and transmission and its vaccine effectiveness among participants of SHIVERS/WellKiwis community and household cohorts

Understanding the impact of COVID-19 vaccination on disease burden and transmission and its vaccine effectiveness among the SHIVERS/WellKiwis community and household cohort, particularly those at-risk, vulnerable Māori and Pacific groups.

Principal Investigator: Professor Sue Huang, ESR

The Niue community's experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic: an application of the Matalili Framework to inform future COVID-19 and vaccination initiatives in Aotearoa New Zealand.

Investigating key experiences of the Niue community during the COVID-19 pandemic to help develop strategies for improving COVID-19 readiness and future vaccination initiatives.

Principal Investigators: Elviso Togiamua, Cecily Eruthayam and Dr Kelvin Lau, Auckland University of Technology Te Wānanga Aronui o Tāmaki Makau Rau and Monū Education and Social Services Trust

The role of digital contact tracing to support improved pandemic responses

Evaluating the use of digital contact tracing technologies by the health sector throughout the pandemic with a specific focus on potential inequities in its application by age, ethnicity and location.

Principal Investigator: Dr Tim Chambers, University of Otago Te Whare Wānanga o Otāgo

The role of vaccine mandates in New Zealand's COVID-19 response

Examining the role of COVID-19 vaccine mandates in vaccine uptake and health workforce turnover.

Principal Investigator: Lisa Meehan, Auckland University of Technology Te Wānanga Aronui o Tāmaki Makau Rau

Tino Rangatiratanga during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Capturing the operational experiences of a collective of kaupapa Māori health and disability service providers in the Bay of Plenty in supporting the COVID-19 response to outline approaches that contributed towards and prevented equity of access to services by Māori.

Principal Investigator: Dr Anna Rolleston, Manawa Ora - Centre for Health

Tūranga Tangata Rite

Capturing operational experiences in supporting the COVID-19 response by Tūranga Health in Tairawhiti, outlining approaches that contributed towards and prevented equity of access to services by Māori.

Principal Investigator: Professor Pauline Norris, Tūranga Health

Understanding key epidemiological features of the Covid-19 pandemic in New Zealand to improve the response

Analysing and describing the key epidemiological features of the COVID-19 pandemic in Aotearoa New Zealand, and assessing the effectiveness of pandemic control measures by quantifying impacts on health and equity.

Principal Investigator: Dr Jennifer Summers, University of Otago Te Whare Wānanga o Otāgo

Understanding the impact of vaccination on Covid-19 infection and long-term health outcomes

Interviewing the caregivers of New Zealand children to assess the long-term effects of Covid-19 infection in this population and investigating whether vaccination modifies these long-term risks.

Principal Investigator: Dr Julie Bennett, University of Otago Te Whare Wānanga o Otāgo

Whānau, hapū and iwi responses to the vaccination roll-out

Exploring the experience and impact of the vaccination roll-out, including vaccine mandates and certificates, on whānau, hapū, iwi and iwi Māori.

Principal Investigator: Dr Rawiri Tinirau, Te Atawhai o Te Ao

What can we learn from factors underpinning the roll-out of the COVID-19 vaccination programme and pandemic response in different rural communities? A mixed methods study.

Using lessons from COVID-19 vaccination programmes to find out what works best to achieve high rates of immunisation in rural communities, especially for rural Māori and Pacific peoples

Principal Investigator: Associate Professor Gary Nixon, University of Otago Te Whare Wānanga o Otāgo


Resources for research teams

Progress reporting template

Progress reporting template (Word, 67 KB)

These progress declaration reporting guidelines are intended to be used by research teams to report on their progress at three, six and nine month intervals. The guidelines incorporate a reporting template for you to complete and return by the dates specified in your contracts.

Completed progress reports should be returned to [email protected]

Data request template

Data request template (Word, 72 KB)

This indicative data request template is intended for research teams requiring access to data held by the Ministry of Health and Te Whatu Ora. This template will help us to streamline the assessment of, and responses to, your requests.

Completed templates should be returned to d[email protected]

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