New Zealand – we’re not immune.

InfectedNZ, an online campaign running from November 21-25, is set to spread the message about the impacts of infectious diseases and antibiotic resistance in Aotearoa New Zealand with a series of data-driven blog posts and social media conversations.

Following on from World Antibiotic Awareness Week, the campaign draws upon a range of experts to discuss the health, social, economic, and environmental impacts of infectious diseases and the growing threat of ineffective antibiotics.

Dr Siouxsie Wiles, Deputy Director (Outreach and Engagement) of Te Pūnaha Matatini and Head of the Bioluminescent Superbugs Lab at the University of Auckland, says the campaign is relevant to all New Zealanders: “The recent outbreak of Campylobacter in Havelock North reminds us New Zealand is far from immune, and that infectious diseases have a broad impact across our society.”

Dr Wiles says the growing rate of antibiotic resistance means today’s easily treatable diseases could have devastating impacts in the future. Already an estimated 700,000+ people worldwide die each year due to drug-resistant infections. The World Health Organisation characterises the problem as one of the biggest threats to global health today.

“Bacteria and other pathogens are evolving to resist existing drugs and their evolution is outpacing the development of new medicines,” Dr Wiles says.

“InfectedNZ  is an opportunity for us to explore the current and future impacts of infectious diseases and antibiotic resistance and have a national conversation about how the public, health workers, policymakers, and the agriculture sector can make a difference.”

Catch the conversation from November 21-25 at and watch it spread with #infectedNZ.

Featured bloggers 

Dr Siouxsie Wiles – Te Pūnaha Matatini and University of Auckland
Professor Shaun Hendy – Te Pūnaha Matatini and University of Auckland
Associate Professor David Ackerly – Victoria University Wellington
Professor Michael Baker – Department of Public Health, University of Otago, Wellington
Dr Jess Berentson-Shaw – Morgan Foundation
Dr Peter Buchanan – Landcare Research
Ryan Chandler – Cure Kids
Dr Adam Heikal – University of Oslo
Dr Heather Hendrickson – Massey University
Dr Karen Hoare – University of Auckland
Callum Irvine – veterinarian
Associate Professor Lance Jennings – University of Otago
William Leung – Department of Public Health, University of Otago, Wellington
Dr Anita Muthukaruppan/Dr Andrew Shelling – University of Auckland
Nick Pattison – school teacher
Dr Helen Petousis-Harris – University of Auckland
Dr Wendi Roe – Massey University
Dr Peter Saxton – University of Auckland
Dr Jonathan Skinner – paediatric cardiologist/electrophysiologist
Dr Rachel Webb – the New Zealand Initiative


InfectedNZ is an online curated conversation by Te Pūnaha Matatini, a Centre of Research Excellence in complex systems and networks. Data used in the discussions is collated and provided by Figure.NZ, a charity devoted to getting people to use data about New Zealand.

View the InfectedNZ data board on Figure.NZ for more insight into the data behind infectious diseases in New Zealand.