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Library Subject Guides

Pacific Studies: Pacific Health

Tips for searching

When searching for Pacific health information you might need to try a combination of keywords. Useful broad terms might include some of the following: Pacific, Pasifika, Pasefika, Oceanic, Oceania, Melanesia, Micronesia, Polynesia. It is often also useful to search specific islands, for example, Fiji, Kiribati, Samoa, Tonga. For a list of islands see the Wikipedia page on Polynesia.

Some of the following databases could be useful -

Health databases


New Zealand, Pacific, Australasia

  • Index New Zealand
  • TROVE (National Library of Australia)

Thesis guide locate UC and other theses

Research repositories

Pacific Models of Health

The Haurora Health Promotion Forum of New Zealand has links to several Pacific Health Promotion models and other useful information.

Fonua: A Pasifika Model for Health Promotion by Sione Tu'itahi

The Fono Model by Jo Lawrence-King

Fonofale Model From Fuimaono Karl Pulotu-Endemann.

Te Vaka Atafaga: A Tokelau Assessment ... Mental Health Practice / by Kupa Kupa. Pacific Health Dialog 15(1)

Traditional Health and Medicine

Most books on traditional health and medicine and ethnobotany are listed by individual countries though some are listed under Oceania or Polynesia. To find them, do a Subject begins with search on these topics and scroll through the list of countries or regions:


These subject headings are also useful:

Statistics: Pacific health and well-being

Statistics can be found on a range of Government webpages including, Statistics New Zealand and the Ministry of Health. is a useful source of NZ statistics cumulated from a range of sources. See also the separate subject guide for New Zealand statistical resources

NZ Government and other organisations sources of information

New Zealand Government

Government departments are a useful source of information and research relating to Pacific and Oceanic health and well being in New Zealand.

Ministry of Health


Health Promotion Agency (HPA)

The HPA is a Crown institution established under the Health and Disability Amendment Act. It runs a range of programmes to promote the health and wellbeing of the community. Issues they've looked at include mental health, smoking, alcohol use and gambling.


Health Research Council (HRC)

The HRC is an agency of the Government that manages the Government's funding of health research.


Ministry for Pacific Peoples 

Ministry of Social Development see Pacific peoples for publications

Oranga Tamariki - Ministry for Children

Organisations and other sources of information

Pacific Research (University of Auckland)

New Zealand Family Violence Clearinghouse searchable database of resources relating to family violence

Health Promotion Forum of New Zealand Not for profit organisation providing information and resources to those working in health promotion. Includes Pacific health resources.

Pacific mental health and wellbeing

Here is a selection of publicly available resources, contact the Library for help finding further resources including scholarly articles. 

Organisation and Government Departments

Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand, search Pacific or individual countries for reports, news and statistics.

Te Kaveinga- Mental health and wellbeing of Pacific People (2018) presents results from the New Zealand Mental Health Monitor and Health and Lifestyles Survey related to the health of Pacific People.

Pacific health resources from the Ministry of Health.

Pacific Peoples and Mental Health (2008) is a paper for the Pacific Health and Disability Action Plan Review. 

'Ala Mo'ui: Pathways to Pacific health and wellbeing 2014-2018 (2014) sets out the strategic direction to address health needs of Pacific peoples.

Individual District Health Boards


He Ara Oranga: report of the Government enquiry into mental health and addiction (2018), includes Pacifika voices and suggestions on how to support the Pacific community. 


Other Resources

The Popao Model: a Pacific recovery and strength concept in mental health (2009), discussion paper from Pacific Health Dialog. 

Preventing suicide for Pasifika - top 5 tactics (2014) from Pasifika support organisation Le Va.

The view and practices of Tongan traditional healers and western-trained Tongan mental health staff by Sione Vaka (2009). 

Exploration of Pacific perspectives of Pacific models of mental health service delivery in New Zealand, an original paper from Pacific Health Dialog.

Subject Guide

Caroline Syddall's picture
Caroline Syddall
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Macmillan Brown Library.

My hours of work are Monday-Thursday 8.30-5.00
03 3693883 or x93883

Health Sciences Subject Guide

For friendly, specialist help with finding health information, contact Margaret Paterson the Health Sciences Subject Librarian.