For immediate release – 21 August 2023

Precision Driven Health (PDH), an innovative and collaborative partnership that has been at the forefront of driving health data science excellence, is celebrating the culmination of its remarkable seven-year partnership programme. 

Established in 2016 as a joint venture between Orion Health, the former Waitematā DHB (now part of Te Whatu Ora), and Waipapa Taumata Rau – the University of Auckland, PDH has paved the way for revolutionary advancements in precision health in Aotearoa.

The purpose of PDH was to revolutionise healthcare, improving outcomes for New Zealanders and their communities by harnessing the power of data science. Supported by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) Partnership programme, PDH has invested over $38 million in health data science collaborations, fostering a dynamic ecosystem of over 45 organisations, including students, clinicians, industry researchers, and academics.

PDH has been instrumental in shaping the landscape of precision health in New Zealand and beyond. The partnership has delivered groundbreaking projects that resonate with the core values of innovation, collaboration, and transformative impact. 

PDH has supported over 300 people from over 45 organisations on more than 100 projects. 

Among the highlights are the creation of the NZ Algorithm Hub, a pioneering platform for health algorithms and machine learning models, and the development of nzRISK, an algorithm predicting surgical outcomes, both of which have demonstrated tangible value for healthcare providers and patients by enabling data science models to assist decision makers.

PDH collaborations led to the creation of MoleMap’s skin cancer risk detection algorithm, as well as De-Identify, a platform for safely releasing health data for research, and support for service navigators from Te Whānau o Waipereira. PDH also led the way with robust reporting and guides on health data science in Aotearoa. They studied how New Zealanders feel about the use of their health data, how to counter bias, and published work on ethics, governance, and Māori leadership in Health Data Science.

“The journey of PDH has been transformative. Our collaborative efforts have yielded benefits that extend beyond technology and data – they have touched lives,” said Dr Kevin Ross, Chief Executive of PDH.  “Our partnerships have not only driven economic benefits but have been instrumental in improving the quality of healthcare and health outcomes for New Zealanders.”

Dr Dale Bramley, National Director of Improvement and Innovation for Te Whatu Ora, thanked PDH for the work that has been conducted through this programme. “I’d especially like to thank the healthcare staff who have invested their time and expertise into PDH projects.”

PDH’s exceptional work has garnered recognition and accolades, including the prestigious NZ Hi-Tech Award for Best Hi-Tech Solution for the Public Good and the Prime Minister’s Science Prize for their contribution to the Te Pūnaha Matatini COVID-19 response modelling team.

As the PDH partnership programme comes to a close, each partner is poised to continue their mission of transforming healthcare. 

In April, Orion Health launched its next-generation Orchestral Health Intelligence Platform thanks to the work of PDH. Orchestral can aggregate all of a patient’s data, and store it in a way that is accessible for AI. PDH has helped to revolutionise how healthcare organisations can view that data, identify gaps in care and target resources more efficiently through the Orchestral platform.

Waipapa Taumata Rau, the University of Auckland is introducing initiatives in health, computer science, and engineering, including the Natural, Artificial, and Organisational Intelligence Institute (NAOInstitute) and the Centre of Machine Learning for Social Good.

Te Whatu Ora is creating a national AI and Algorithm Expert Advisory Group, while also focusing on integrating health data science innovation into the reformed health system. Manatū Hauora, the Ministry of Health, has also released its Long Term Investment Briefing on Precision Health. The briefing highlights the value and need for public and private organisations to work together to realise the huge potential for health benefits and efficiencies through precision health.

While the formal partnership concludes, the legacy of PDH will continue to shape the future of healthcare in New Zealand and beyond. The journey of innovation, collaboration, and transformative change continues, and the lessons learnt and advancements achieved will serve as a beacon of inspiration for healthcare pioneers worldwide.
For more information about Precision Driven Health and its transformative impact, please visit