The Notifiable Disease Management System (NDMS) is an operational disease management system that supports the investigation, response and control of communicable disease, and strengthens New Zealand’s surveillance systems.

The primary users of the system are those directly involved in the management of notifiable diseases within the NPHS, this includes Medical Officers of Health, Public Health Nurses, Health Protections Officers, contact tracers and those that are supporting these activities.

Notifiable Disease Management System (NDMS) Privacy Statement

The Notifiable Disease Management System (the NDMS)

Health New Zealand - Te Whatu Ora uses a secure national electronic database to support the notification of infectious diseases and the accurate and secure recording of all notifiable disease case and contact activity.

Case investigation and contact tracing is a normal part of the management of all notifiable diseases. It’s key to ensuring that we limit the spread of the disease.

This Privacy Statement outlines how Health New Zealand (referred to as “we” or “us”) may collect, use, store and otherwise handle your personal information in NDMS in accordance with the Privacy Act 2020 and Health Information Privacy Code 2020.

We may update this privacy statement from time to time. Please check this privacy statement regularly for modifications and updates. This privacy statement was last updated on 27 February 2024.

What are the purposes of the NDMS?

The purpose of the NDMS is to provide a national collection of notifiable infectious diseases and hazard events and to support case investigation and contact tracing. The NDMS is used to record information collected about people with, or suspected of having, a notifiable infectious disease and hazard events to identify the source of the infection and help prevent its spread.

This enables contact tracers to make contacts aware that they have been exposed and advise them to take appropriate precautions to keep themselves and their whanau safe. It will also be used to identify and manage the source of the disease, where appropriate. 

The NDMS is used by Te Whatu Ora, National Public Health Services, and the Crown Research Institute of Environmental Science Research (ESR) to support the effective management of infectious disease by undertaking the following activities: 

  • national and regional management, planning and reporting,
  • auditing case investigation and contact tracing related services,
  • quality improvements and statistical analysis,
  • research purposes will be authorised by the Director-General of Health, if required and approval by an ethics committee has been given for that research and it will not be published in a form that could reasonably be expected to identify any individual.

Who will be able to see the information on the NDMS?

All access by those authorised users to information on the NDMS is tracked and monitored. Only authorised users who have been granted access credentials are able to access the NDMS, and these users will all be involved in case investigation and contact tracing related processes.

How do case investigators and contact tracers use the NDMS?

Case investigators and contact tracers are specially trained, and authorised under the Health Act, to make inquiries of those people who have, or are suspected of having, a notifiable disease, and advise those who may be at risk of infection.

The NDMS assists case investigators and contact tracers by performing the following functions:

  • Receive notifications: Recording the laboratory test results for notifiable diseases and receive notifications from medical practitioners for people who have or are suspected of having a notifiable disease.


  • Making contact: Providing access to National Health Index (NHI) and National Enrolment Service (NES) information.  This means we can make sure we have the correct identification of individuals and the most up to date demographic and contact details. Cases investigators and contact tracers may contact cases to gather additional information and undertake contact tracing, this may occur in person, via phone or through surveys and questionnaire (manual and electronic). Sometimes contact tracers will check in with cases and contacts to see how they are. This can be done either by phone call or online using NDMS.


  • Recording: Storing case management information for notifiable diseases and all relevant contact tracing details.


  • Pathways: All cases proceed along NDMS pathways that are clinically designed to minimise risk to cases, contacts and the general public.


  • Investigating:


  • Seeking information: Sometimes it can be difficult to identify or locate cases or contacts. In these instances, we make inquires outside of the NDMS to help locate them so they can be given the relevant information to help keep themselves and others safe.
  • Exposure Events: These are place where people may have been exposed to a disease. This could include, for example, a flight, a party at a bar, or a church service.

Is the collection of information voluntary?

Under the Health Act, the initial notification of laboratory results is mandatory, and medical practitioners are required to notify people who have or are suspected of having a notifiable infectious disease.

Depending on the risk associated with that disease, case investigators and contact tracing activities will be undertaken to limit the spread. Some information will be sourced from other databases such as test results and contact details without any direct contact with individuals.

Case investigators and contact tracers will always seek to work with individuals to obtain information on a voluntary basis as this information is so important. However, if necessary, the case investigators and contact tracers may use the provisions of Part 3 of Subpart 5 of the Health Act and require individuals and other persons to provide information on a mandatory basis in accordance with the provisions of that Act.

What steps are we taking to protect your privacy?

We take your privacy seriously. NDMS processes ensure your personal information is managed appropriately.

Your personal information will be held and managed in accordance with the Privacy Act 2020 and Health Information Privacy Code 2020. Any information collected onto the NDMS will be held securely in compliance with Te Whatu Ora standards. Measures are in place to protect your information from unauthorised access. To deliver the NDMS service we use a secure Salesforce platform based on Amazon Web Services located in Sydney, Australia.

A Privacy Impact Assessment (PIA) has been completed for the NDMS. The PIA will be updated to reflect features and functionality of the NDMS.

How long will your information be kept for?

Information about the health records will be retained as required by the Health (Retention of Health Information) Regulations 1996.

NDMS data is retained for at least 10 years in accordance with various legislative requirements such as:

  • The Health (Retention of Health Information) Regulations 1996
  • ISO15189 data retention requirements.

Where health information doesn't form part of a person's health record and it is not required to be held for other legitimate reasons eg specific requirements under legislation, it will be destroyed once there is no longer a lawful purpose for retaining it.

Access to and requests to correct the information Required

You have the right to access any information we hold about you and ask us to correct it if you think it is wrong.

To access any personal information held by us, or if you wish to correct your information, please email.

When making a request to access or change your information, please include:

  • your name
  • contact address (email or postal)
  • contact phone number
  • details of the information you want or want to correct - this needs to be as clear and specific as you can make it.

We may ask you for more details.

Please note that before we can provide you with your information or make any changes we need to be satisfied about your identity. To do so, we may need to ask you further questions or to view identification which establishes your identity.

Requesting information on behalf of someone else

If you are requesting information on behalf of someone else, you will need to provide their authorisation or other documentation to support that you have the right to do so.

Queries or Concerns

If you have any queries or concerns about how your personal information has been managed, please contact us to see if we can resolve the problem.

You can-

  • Email us at
  • Write to us at Privacy Officer - Te Whatu Ora, PO Box 793, Wellington 6140, New Zealand 

If you’re not satisfied with our response to your concerns, you can contact the Office of the Privacy Commissioner. For more information see the Office of the Privacy Commissioner’s website.