District Health Boards (DHBs) are responsible for funding and providing health services for the population living in their district. Health Needs Assessment (HNA) forms an initial step in the planning undertaken to fulfil this responsibility. DHBs are required to regularly assess the health status of their resident population, any factors that may adversely affect the health status of the population and their needs for services.
This document takes an epidemiological and comparative approach to Health Needs Assessment. It provides an overview rather than detailed information in any area. Previous Health Needs Assessments undertaken in 2001 and 2005 have produced a single document. In 2008 additional HNAs focused on the needs of our Māori, Pacific, and Asian communities and this overall HNA should be used in conjunction with those three documents.