Provost Professor Wendy Larner says the Faculty builds on existing specialist schools and centres at Victoria such as the Graduate School of Nursing, Midwifery and Health, and the Health Services Research Centre.
“We have a lot of researchers and teachers involved in the health sector across the University, and the new Faculty will draw on that academic expertise to promote the distinctiveness theme of Improving the Health and Wellbeing of our Communities.
“The Faculty of Health combines this specialist expertise with our traditional strengths in public policy, government, business and industrial relations to make a difference to New Zealand’s health system.”
The inaugural dean of the new Faculty is Professor Gregor Coster. A Victoria alumnus and former Professor of General Practice and Dean of Graduate Studies at the University of Auckland, Gregor has spent several decades managing and governing major health organisations, including two district health boards, WorkSafe New Zealand, the Accident Compensation Corporation and Pharmac, as well as spending 15 years in full-time general medical practice.
“We’re looking at New Zealand’s health system as a whole and how we can add value, drawing on our strengths as a capital city university with a global perspective. We are working closely with district health boards and government ministries.
“The health system is more than simply a network of doctors and other medical specialists. It involves people in a wide range of areas, from nurses and midwives and other clinical disciplines, policy analysts to medical researchers, to data management experts, and community workers and leaders. And we are excited about the possibilities for working in Maori and Pacific health development.
“New Zealand’s health system underpins all our lives from childhood to retirement. There is enormous potential to improve the health and wellbeing of individuals and the wellbeing of society as a whole, and to ensure New Zealand’s future is a healthy one.”