Aucklstudy to leverage anonymised data of over 550,000 patients to assess impact of multiple morbidities

Healthcare cooperative ProCare Health has teamed up with the University of Aucklthe University of Otago to conduct a long-term study to determine the impact of multiple morbidities on the risk of hospitalisation or death from cardiovascular diseases.

Funded by the Health Research Council of New Zealand, the three-year study commenced in January. The 2014 ProCare Adult Cohort Study involves patients over the age of 18 who are enrolled in a ProCare practice since the first quarter of 2014.

It anonymises patient data of over 550,000 people; these data are linked with the TestSafe repository of blood test results national health databases on hospitalisations, deaths community pharmacy dispensing.

The data set will enable researchers to anonymously track patients over time look back between five 10 years for history of long-term conditions.


The study brings together both primary secondary care data on long-term conditions. According to a press release, the research team intends to “identify the true burden of cardiovascular disease other major health conditions in the community as opposed to just that which is identified via hospitalisation records alone”.

One in four New Zealresidents has two or more chronic conditions, which typically occur 10-15 years earlier for Māori, Pasifika other high needs populations, according to Sue Wells, the study’s principal investigator professor at the University of Auckland.

“These populations are also at greater risk of having a heart attack or stroke, yet our current primary care guidelines do not provide sufficient advice on how to assess cardiovascular disease risk care for people with a combination of health conditions,” she added.

The study will investigate the possible pitfalls of having too many medications point out areas for intervention in treatments for the best health outcomes. “We know that with the right treatment at the right time, someone’s risk of cardiovascular disease hospitalisation or death can be reduced by around 50%,” Wells claimed.

Moreover, the study will ascertain whether treatments, such as heart disease prevention medications, are prescribed what medications are being dispensed at community pharmacies.

ProCare Clinical Director Allan Moffitt, who also co-leads the study, said the co-payment for medications may hamper patients from getting their prescribed medicines filled, leading to poor health outcomes for some people.


In November last year, Taiwanese digital health platform Health2Sync partnered with DAIKYO ASTAGE to provide chronic health management services to residents of the property firm’s apartments in Japan.

In 2019, Singapore-based health startup WhiteCoat teamed up with caregiving services platform Homage in piloting a telehealth programme that intends to improve the management of long-term health conditions among the elderly.


“This study has the potential to save lives reduce hospitalisations, which will reduce the overall burden on our health system. With Māori Pacific people being disproportionately affected by long-term health conditions, it is hoped the outcomes of this study will also inform public policy changes that can be made to address inequities – a goal for all of us working with high-risk vulnerable communities,” ProCare CEO Bindi Norwell said.

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