Melanie’s PhD in Paediatrics, Māori SUDI, with the University of Auckland (UoA) was conducted under the academic supervision of Professor Ed Mitchell (UoA), Associate Professor John Thompson (UoA) and Professor Beverley Lawton, Victoria University of Wellington. Her doctorate examined the effects of hazards in the infant sleep environment on the risk of SUDI in New Zealand by drawing on data from the SUDI Nationwide Case Control Study (2012-2015). The hazards include infant exposure to sofa-sleeping, recent use by caregivers of alcohol, cannabis, and/or other drugs, and bed type and pillows. She’s also completed a study, Pēpē-Infant Sleep Practices and SUDI in Aotearoa New Zealand (2019) was based in Counties-Manukau, Tamaki-Makaurau Auckland, and used qualitative and Kaupapa Māori methodology to explore factors influencing pēpē-infant sleep decision-making by māmā. Melanie is of Ngāti Maniapoto and Raukawa descent and has a registered nursing clinical background.
Dr Melanie Christensen
PhD in Paediatrics