New Zealand adults who experienced one or more types of unmet need for primary health care in the past 12 months
Year ended June 2012–2021, thousands of people (estimated)
The following information applies to all values in the table.
Indicator: Experienced one or more types of unmet need for primary health care in the past 12 months, Grouping variable: Total, Category: Total, Estimate: Median
All results presented in this data are weighted so that they are representative of the total population of adults 15+ and children aged 0–14 years (or a smaller subset where specified).
The dataset includes unadjusted prevalence figures for most indicators, estimated number of people, and 95% confidence intervals.
Indicators are provided by age group, gender, ethnic group (total response ethnicity, ie where people who belong to more than one ethnic group are counted once in each of the ethnic groups they identify with) and neighbourhood deprivation (area-based measure of socioeconomic position or deprivation, NZDep2018). Quintile 1 represents the 20 percent of areas with the lowest levels of deprivation and quintile 5 represents the 20 percent of areas with the highest level of deprivation.
The question about sexual identity was asked using a computer-assisted self-interview (CASI). It was not asked of respondents who were completing the interview with cognitive or language assistance from a family member/caregiver/friend. This was to ensure that no-one other than the interviewer/professional translator could hear the answers. However, there's still a chance that some respondents may not feel comfortable to answer truthfully.
Respondents also have the option of answering ‘don‘t know’ or choosing not to answer. Please note that a high level of item non-response was present for this question. Non-responses are excluded when calculating percentages or estimates of the population.
Disability status: The question set used to identify disabled people is known as the Washington Group Short Set (WGSS). The major objective of the Washington Group (WG) is to provide information on disability that is comparable throughout the world. The six domains included in the WGSS were chosen because they were found to be the ones that identified a majority of people at risk of being restricted in their independent participation in society. Using the WGSS, disabled people are those who have at least a lot of difficulty seeing or hearing (even with glasses or hearing aids), walking or climbing stairs, remembering or concentrating, self-care, or communicating.
The WGSS should not be used to produce estimates of disability prevalence or to investigate levels of need for services or environmental change. To meet these and other data needs, a disability-specific survey, with a more extensive question set, would be required. The population identified as disabled using the WGSS is considerably smaller than the population identified by disability-specific surveys. One of the limitations is that no WGSS question fully captures mental health impairments. The number of children in each year of the Health Survey who were identified as disabled by the Washington Group Short Set is too small to allow robust conclusions to be drawn so the results for children by disability status have not been shown.
Data collection was disrupted by COVID-19 restrictions in 2020 and 2021. The survey achieved lower sample sizes as a result of this disruption.
The survey results are likely to underestimate or overestimate some indicators due to the nature of self-reported information. For example, many of the survey results assume that the respondents could accurately recall previous events (such as a diagnosis by a doctor). Also, many indicators are about diagnosed conditions, and not everyone with a particular condition will have had it diagnosed by a doctor. The amount of error will vary from indicator to indicator, depending on a number of factors, including the respondent’s age. Respondents may also over-report good behaviours or under-report risk behaviours based on what they consider to be socially desirable.
Some indicators (body size and raised blood pressure) are based on actual measurements taken by the surveyors rather than self-reported information. These results are more reliable than self-reported information because the surveyors apply consistent measurement techniques to all respondents using standardised measuring tools.
This survey presents a snapshot of the health of New Zealand adults and children at one point in time. The survey can be used to look at associations between different factors, such as health status and neighbourhood deprivation. However, we cannot conclude that the survey results show cause-and-effect relationships between these factors, in part because we do not know which factor occurred first. For example, if the survey finds that a particular condition is more common in people living in deprived areas, an association has been identified. This association does not necessarily mean the condition is caused by living in deprived areas.
Not included in the survey were: people living in institutions (such as for long-term hospital care, hospital- and dementia-level care in aged-care facilities, and in prisons), the homeless, short-term visitors and tourists.
The data provides a snapshot of the health of New Zealanders through the publication of key indicators on health behaviours, health status and access to health care for both adults and children.
Method of collection/Data provider
The New Zealand Health Survey (NZHS) conducts face-to-face interviews with adults and the parents/caregivers of children annually. The survey results refer to the usually resident population of all ages living in permanent dwellings, aged-care facilities and student accommodation.