133 Molesworth Street
PO Box 5013
+64 4 496 2000
16 August 2022
By email: [FYI request #19938 email]
Response to your request for official information
Thank you for your request under the Official Information Act 1982 (the Act) to Manatū Hauora
(Ministry of Health) on 17 July 2022 for information relating to COVID-19 case numbers and
hospitalisations. Your request is responded to below in turn.
1) On the 8th of July 2022 there was a change on the table 'Vaccination details' on the
Covid-19 Case demographics page (https://www.health.govt.nz/covid-19-novel-
coronavirus/covid-19-data-and-statistics/covid-19-case-demographics). Compared to
same table on the 7th July, total cases of Covid-19 reduced for Partially vaccinated by
11,421, and Fully vaccinated reduced 853. Unvaccinated and boostered on the other
hand increased by 14336, and 45,636 cases respectively. Can you please explain the
case definition or allocation policy that resulted in these significant changes?
2) On the same table on the same day, hospitalisations decreased for all categories
(except for the new 'Under 12 years old' category). Presumably this is because non-
covid related hospitalisations have been removed as per the note at the bottom of the
table. But the decrease was not any where near uniform. Unvaccinated decreased only
11.6% while partially vaccinated,fully vaccinated, and boostered decreased 71.9%, 56%,
and 44.1% respectively.
Why would the new policy result in a disproportionate reduction especially for the
The vaccination status of cases was classified incorrectly for approximately a week following
changes introduced with our reporting upgrades on 6 July 2022. This was due to a coding error
that resulted in vaccination status of cases being reported as it was a week after they tested
positive for COVID-19, rather than a week before they tested positive for COVID-19.
The change in reporting was due to a switch in data sources to new data which provides insight
into how many hospitalisations were for
COVID-19, rather than just with
More information about the change in reporting can be found in our media release:
A spreadsheet containing vaccination breakdowns of cases, hospitalisations and ICU as they
should have been reported each day from 6 July to 13 July 2022 is attached as Appendix 1.
3) What is the reason for changing the 'Not eligible' category to 'Under 12 years old'?
Does the latter include both vaccinated and unvaccinated? If so, what are the numbers for
The "ineligible" category has always referred to people under the age of 12. This change
in terminology does not reflect a change in definitions used.
We have delayed including 5-11 year olds in the "eligible" figures to allow time for the rollout of
vaccination to occur. We are looking into adjusting the 'ineligible' category to refer to only under-
5s in the near future.
4) Does the ministry record the number of all hospitalisations for any reason by
vaccination status? If so can you supply the totals for the month of June?
Manatū Hauora does not have a dataset for all hospitalisations by vaccination status. Therefore,
this part of your request is refused under section 18(g)(i) of the Act as the information requested
is not held by the Ministry and there are no grounds for believing it is held by another agency
subject to the Act. Please note, this information may be held across multiple datasets but would
require substantial collation to create in the format requested.
5) on the Vaccination Data page for the table 'Total Vacinations 12+' There is an entry for
'Third Primary'. What is this category for?
The ‘Third Primary’ category is for people who have received three doses of a COVID-19
vaccine as part of their primary course. Normally a primary course consists of two doses of a
COVID-19 vaccine, but immunocompromised people aged 12+ are eligible for three doses as
part of their primary course, as well as a first and second booster (5 doses total). This
information can be found on our website here:www.health.govt.nz/covid-19-novel-
Under section 28(3) of the Act, you have the right to ask the Ombudsman to review any
decisions made under this request. The Ombudsman may be contacted by email at:
or by calling 0800 802 602.
Please note that this response, with your personal details removed, may be published on
Manatu Hauorā website at: www.health.govt.nz/about-ministry/information-releases/responses-
Nāku noa, nā
Dr Andrew Old
Public Health Agency
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