What We Do
Toi Te Ora Public Health develops and delivers a wide range of health promotion and health protection initiatives for people in the greater Bay of Plenty and Lakes districts.
The focus of our work supports the social and physical environments in which we live, and delivering programmes encouraging healthy activities.
Our work also includes:
- protecting against community health risks and threats
- preventing illness
- promoting health and wellbeing
Public health protects and promotes the health of population groups rather than treating diseases, disorders and disabilities in individuals. It is the fence at the top of the cliff.
Our health promotion team promotes healthy ideas and programmes to help people lead healthy, happy and rewarding lives where we live, learn, work and play.
The team’s work involves creating supportive environments, influencing policy and organisational change to support health improvement, so that the healthy choice is the easy choice. Toi Te Ora Health Improvement Advisors work on a range of issues across a number of different settings.
Our health protection services are about protecting people, preventing harm and planning for threats.
Our health protection officers' work includes environmental health which covers all aspects of natural and built environment that may affect human health, and communicable disease. We have three medical officers of health who are trained as specialists in public health medicine and play a supportive leadership role in guiding the health protection unit.
Health Protection Officers are experts in environmental health and communicable diseases. They are trained in science, law and investigation skills, and have a thorough understanding of how the environment, whether it be natural or man-modified, affects our health.
Health Protection Officers routinely follow up notifications of diseases like salmonella and giardia. This involves contacting the case and asking questions about where they have been and what they have been doing, for example eating risky foods or drinking contaminated water. HPOs can provide advice to people so they avoid infection. In some cases HPOs will take steps to eliminate the risk, for example closure of food premises. We provide expert advice to agencies including councils and other government departments in order to improve regulatory controls.
Health Protection Officers are Designated Officers under various pieces of health-related law and are responsible for ensuring compliance with these laws.
Contact a Health Protection Officer on 0800 221 555 to talk about any of the following:
Health Services Development
The primary purpose of the health services development (HSD) team is to provide public health leadership, public health intelligence and development to support funders, planners and providers in the health sector.
This includes providing:
- Public health leadership and expertise providing a public health perspective within the health sector and public health input to health service planning, development and evaluation.
- Public health intelligence including epidemiological expertise, population health data analysis and health needs assessment.
- Workforce planning in response to population health needs and trends as well as workforce development with respect to areas of public health concern such as communicable disease prevention and management (including infection control and immunisation), health inequalities, population health approaches and health promotion.
- Health promotion support and development within healthcare settings such as hospitals and primary care environments.
- Communications functions to support initiatives to achieve population health goals and outcomes.
Internally, similar approaches are used to support Toi Te Ora Public Health, and the HSD team has planning and development functions including:
- Providing expert public health intelligence and the evidence-base to inform strategies, plans, programmes, projects and interventions.
- Promoting, leading and supporting the participation of all staff in planning and development activities.
- Continually improving the quality of planning and development activities that contribute to improved population health.
- Providing communications, as well as workforce development expertise and support.
Learn more about our range of public health initiatives.