Professor Matthew Parsons

BSc(Hons), MSc, PhD

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Professor-Gerontology Nursing


I am committed to deliver the highest quality education, specifically around gerontology at undergraduate, postgraduate as well as through supervision of Honours, Masters and Doctoral students.  I have supervised 28 students, of which eight are at doctoral level.  The gerontology research platform established by myself within the School of Nursing provides the highest quality experience for students at either a taught or research level.

Since 2000, I have developed and led gerontology research in the School of Nursing, The University of Auckland and have brought in research and consultancy funds totalling over NZ$8 million.  In 2004, I established GERaC, a UniServices Business Unit with a team of nine staff who have a focus on research and education in gerontology.  GERaC is now considered the foremost older person implementation, support and evaluation team in New Zealand with an annual income of around half a million and in 2008/9 is being reformed into a inter-faculty business unit between the Business School and School of Nursing.  The aim of the team is to undertake translational research into best practice and to support organisations to implement high quality services for older people.  GERaC has a working relationship with nearly all of the 21 DHBs in New Zealand and three states in Australia.  GERaC is committed to leading service evaluation and delivery across both New Zealand and Australia and I see my role as pivotal in improving services for older people through a combination of translational research and education in New Zealand and providing consultancy to Australian state and federal governments as well as Non Government Organisations.

I have published 15 refereed journal articles and have a further six currently under review and anticipate to have published a further five articles in 2008.  In addition to this, I have three book chapters, 26 technical reports and research and consultancy funds in excess of eight million.  I have been invited to deliver six international key note addresses and a further 25 invited key note addresses in New Zealand as well as nine conference presentations.  In addition, I was the invited academic providing expert opinion for a television series comparing age cohorts and behaviour for New Zealand ‘TV on air’ viewing on prime time TV3 in 2006.  Further, I have 28 media mentions across a variety of sources including television, newspapers and radio in New Zealand, Australia and the United Kingdom, exploring current issues in ageing.


  • 2002 Institute of Gerontology, Kings College London, PhD, Gerontology
  • 1995 Institute of Gerontology, Kings College London, MSc, Gerontology
  • 1991 Kings College London, BSc (Hons), Nursing
  • 1991 Kings College London, Registered General Nurse


Previous appointments

  • 2008 - current     School of Nursing, University of Auckland – Associate Professor (0.8 FTE)
  • 2007 – current    South Auckland Clinical School, University of Auckland (0.2 FTE)
  • 2006 – current    GERaC Business Unit, UniServices, University of Auckland – Co-Director
  • 2005 – 2006       Presbyterian Support Northern – Senior Clinical Advisor (0.5 FTE)
  • 2003 – 2005       Clinical Trials Research Unit, University of Auckland – Programme Manager (0.5 FTE)
  • 2000 – 2002       Auckland District Health Board - Clinical Nurse Consultant (0.5 FTE)
  • 2000 – 2008       School of Nursing, University of Auckland – Senior Lecturer (0.5 to 1.0 FTE)
  • 1993 – 1998       Lambeth Healthcare NHS Trust, London, UK – Senior Clinical Manager (H grade)

Research | Current

Research interests

  • Gerontology
  • Health services for older people
  • Chronic disease

I have won in excess of $8 million in competitive research funds and consultancy contracts.  The latter exclusively concerns the delivery of evidence based education packages, policy development support at ministerial level, clinical service contracts or implementation support, to a value of over $1 million.

Teaching | Current


  • NURSING105 – Medical Sciences
  • NURSING201 – Dealing with patients with patho-physiological problems
  • NURSING301 – Child and family health nursing


  • NURSING 747 – Health Assessment
  • POPLPRAC 730 – Psychosocial issues in palliative care
  • NURSING 769 – Research methods in nursing and health
  • POPLHLTH 749 – Biology of Ageing
  • POPLPRAC 728 – Rehabilitation in Later Life
  • POPLPRAC 726 – Health Services in Later Life
  • POLPRAC725 – Principles in Gerontology
  • POPLPRAC727 – Mental Health in Later Life

Postgraduate supervision

Research thesis supervision:

  • 2004 – current: Doctoral supervision
  • 2000 – current: Masters of Nursing 120 point thesis
  • 2000 – current: Bachelor of Nursing Honours
  • 2000 – current: Master of Health Sciences 120 point thesis
  • 2000 – current: Master of Nursing 60 point dissertation


  • 2008: Johanna Briggs - Invited International appointment to Expert Advisory Group in Community Care
  • 2008: Department of Health, Australia - Invited international expert informing the development of community services for older people
  • 2008: Strategy to Advance Nursing - Invited national appointment to joint Ministry of Health / Ministry of Education committee to oversee capacity building in nursing and allied health research, representing rehabilitation
  • 2008: Ministry of Social Development - Invited committee member to select committee overseeing capacity building in gerontology education and research
  • 2007: Campbell Ballentyne - Award for excellence in research ($30,000)
  • 2004: The University of Auckland - Dean’s Research Development Award in recognition of excellence in research ($50,000)
  • 2003: Ministry of Health - Invitation to join ministerial select committee overseeing the national development of older person specialist services
  • 2004: Ministry of Social Development - Invitation to join eminent members group, focussing on capacity building in gerontology research

Committees/Professional groups/Services

  • 2006 – current: CareerForce - Invited expert to committee overseeing the development of education in community services, Industry Training Organisation
  • 2007: Auckland DHB - Invited member to select committee overseeing development of health services for older people in Auckland
  • 2007: Auckland Regional Council - Invited expert to contribute to positive ageing in Auckland
  • 2006: Eastern Institute of Technology - Invited visiting scholar
  • 2006: Ministerial briefings - Hon Ruth Dyson and Hon Pete Hodgson
  • 2004: NZ Nurses Organisation - Appointed committee member for New Zealand Nurses Organisation
  • 2004: Future Heads - Dean nomination to inaugural University of Auckland training programme in leadership
  • 2004: Heart Foundation - Member of Cardiac Advisory Group
  • 2002: Auckland University of Technology - Invited visiting scholar
  • 2002: Ministry of Health - Contributing author to the Health of Older People Strategy Invited committee member
  • 2001: NZ Association of Gerontology - Committee member

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

  • Mathieson, S., Parsons, J., Kaplan, M., & Parsons, M. (2018). Combining functional electrical stimulation and mirror therapy for upper limb motor recovery following stroke: a randomised trial. European Journal of Physiotherapy, 1-6. 10.1080/21679169.2018.1472635
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: John Parsons
  • Parsons, M., Rouse, P., Sajtos, L., Harrison, J., Parsons, J., & Gestro, L. (2018). Developing and utilising a new funding model for home-care services in New Zealand. Health & social care in the community, 26 (3), 345-355. 10.1111/hsc.12525
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: John Parsons, Paul Rouse, Laszlo Sajtos, Julie Harrison
  • Jacobs, S. P., Parsons, M., Rouse, P., Parsons, J., & Gunderson-Reid, M. (2018). Using benchmarking to assist the improvement of service quality in home support services for older people-IN TOUCH (Integrated Networks Towards Optimising Understanding of Community Health). Evaluation and Program Planning, 67, 113-121. 10.1016/j.evalprogplan.2017.12.008
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: John Parsons, Stephen Jacobs, Paul Rouse
  • Parsons, M., Parsons, J., Rouse, P., Pillai, A., Mathieson, S., Parsons, R., ... Kenealy, T. (2018). Supported Discharge Teams for older people in hospital acute care: A randomised controlled trial. Age and Ageing, 47 (2), 288-294. 10.1093/ageing/afx179
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: John Parsons, Timothy Kenealy, Paul Rouse, Avinesh Pillai
  • Metzelthin, S. F., Zijlstra, G. A., van Rossum, E., de Man-van Ginkel, J. M., Resnick, B., Lewin, G., ... Kempen, G. I. J. M. (2017). 'Doing with …' rather than 'doing for …' older adults: rationale and content of the 'Stay Active at Home' programme. Clinical Rehabilitation, 31 (11), 1419-1430. 10.1177/0269215517698733
  • Parsons, M., Senior, H., Kerse, N., Chen, M.-H., Jacobs, S., & Anderson, C. (2017). Randomised trial of restorative home care for frail older people in New Zealand. Nursing Older People, 29 (7), 27-33. 10.7748/nop.2017.e897
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Ngaire Kerse, Stephen Jacobs
  • Moloney, W., Boxall, P., Parsons, M., & Cheung, G. (2017). Factors predicting Registered Nurses' intentions to leave their organization and profession: A job demands-resources framework. JAN: Journal of Advanced Nursing, 74 (4), 864-875. 10.1111/jan.13497
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Willoughby Moloney, Peter Boxall, Gordon Cheung
  • Moloney, W. I., Boxall, P., Parsons, M., & Sheridan, N. (2017). Which factors influence New Zealand registered nurses to leave their profession?. New Zealand Journal of Employment Relations, 43 (1), 1-13.
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Willoughby Moloney, Peter Boxall


Contact details

Primary office location

M&HS BUILDING 505 - Bldg 505
Level 2, Room 231B
New Zealand

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