Parents of premature babies will have a better idea of what the future holds for their children as a result of intensive research that's underway.
The study by Capital and Coast DHB and Otago University in Wellington is looking at a range of 'life events' including before-school checks, school attendance records, special needs support, social development, health conditions, hospitalisation rates, educational achievement and employment.
The researchers are using Statistics NZ's integrated data platform.
"Linked data is critical for medical experts and researchers to understand the life course of premature babies, as well as giving parents a better understanding of what the future holds," Statistics Minister Scott Simpson said.
"By looking at health, education, employment and social data of premature babies, and comparing them with other births, researchers can get a good picture of what happens to these babies as they progress to school and into adult life."
Research results are expected to be published before the end of the year.