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Background and aims

‘Zero-rated data’ or 'sponsored data' is an initiative that was introduced by the New Zealand government that enabled people to access essential digital health and wellbeing services by sponsoring them with government paid phone data.  


The zero-rated data initiative was aimed at people in lower socio-economic groups who cannot routinely afford data payments despite having a smart phone.  This group is also identified as often having the highest need to access this information.

Outcomes and benefits

The initiative provides these individuals free access to key health sector websites including physical health services, mental health support and information on COVID-19 across a range of mobile networks. As a result, a range of health and wellbeing inequalities faced by this demographic can be reduced. 

Additional information

You can find out more about the zero-rated data initiative by accessing the New Zealands Ministry of Health article.

You can read about the sponsored data project review by accessing the New Zealands Ministry of Health article. 

The aim of the ZSA Case Studies is to introduce users to a range of examples of new and innovative practice, with the broad aim of working to support people with their mental health, bring awareness to and help prevent incidence of suicide. Please seek further information by contacting the ZSA and appropriate professional input prior to making a decision over its use.

This content was developed based on information within the public domain. If you would like to update this content, contact us

For more information on ZSA case studies, please refer to ZSA Policies.

Content last updated: 24/11/2022.

If you have an example of innovative work and / or good practice that you would like to share with us, please e-mail: