Mr Andrew Paul Thompson



Andrew is a Social Worker and Therapist with the Consult Liaison Psychiatry Team at Starship Children’s Hospital. His work involves consulting with children, their families and staff across the hospital on issues relating to trauma adjustment, coping and adapting to treatment, and grief. He was a founding member of the Paediatric Palliative Care Team and the Bereavement Service at Starship and continues to act as an educator and trainer in these fields.

Before his arrival in New Zealand, Andrew worked with The Children’s Society, one of the UK’s largest NGOs. Andrew has over 30 years of social care experience with children and families and is a Trustee of the Auckland Grief Centre. His Family Meeting research was recognised with the 2009 Research Award from the Children’s Research Centre at the Auckland District Health Board.

Find out more about Starship Children's Hospital.

Find out more about Auckland Grief Centre.

Research | Current

Andrew’s thesis examined whanau/family meetings in the Paediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) where he explored the process of family meetings in the health environment and the factors that might enhance family satisfaction. His current doctoral research 'Extraordinary Children' is focusing on the parent and doctor relationship concerning a child who has a complex or undiagnosed neurological condition. He is particularly interested in how families are using new technology and the internet to improve the outcomes for their children.

Andrew is also interested in effective health communication that engages family and patients during traumatic events and difficult end-of-life conversations. His most recent research is the establishment of a research agenda for the South Auckland Positive Ageing Network.

Teaching | Current

  • Health social work
  • The social work environment
  • Social work practice skills
  • Communication in health
  • Grief, loss and trauma
  • Paediatric palliative care
  • Whanau family aiga practice


Areas of expertise

Health social work

Health communication

Loss and grief

Family meetings

Committees/Professional groups/Services

  • MANZASW, PSNZ, Registered Social Worker

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

  • Shepherd, M., Merry, S., Lambie, I., & Thompson, A. (2018). Indigenous Adolescents' Perception of an eMental Health Program (SPARX): Exploratory Qualitative Assessment. JMIR serious games, 6 (3)10.2196/games.8752
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Ian Lambie, Matthew Shepherd, Sally Merry
  • Thompson, A. (2017). When doctors and parents disagree: Ethics, paediatrics and the zone of parental discretion. AOTEAROA NEW ZEALAND SOCIAL WORK, 29 (1), 117-118.
  • Thompson, A. (2016). Hippocrates and the smart phone: The evolving parent and doctor relationship. Journal of paediatrics and child health, 52 (4), 366-369. 10.1111/jpc.13170
  • Rankine, M., & Thompson, A. (2015). ‘Swimming to shore’: co-constructing supervision with a thinking-aloud process. Reflective Practice, 16 (4), 508-521. 10.1080/14623943.2015.1064377
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Matt Rankine
  • Rankine, M., & Thompson, A. (2015). ‘Swimming to shore': Co-constructing supervision with a thinking aloud process. Paper presented at Social Work Education in Europe: Towards 2025, Biccoca University, Milan, Italy. 29 June - 2 July 2015. Related URL.
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Matt Rankine
  • Thompson, A., & Adamson, C. E. (2013). Collaborative practice and family meetings in children’s health. In L. Beddoe, J. Maidment (Eds.) Social Work Practice for Promoting Health and Wellbeing: Critical Issues. Abingdon, UK: Routledge.
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Carole Adamson, Liz Beddoe
  • Thompson, A., & Irving Hendry, T. (2012). Beyond words: Grieving when your child has died. Wellington, New Zealand: Skylight. Pages: 100.
  • Thompson, A. (2011). Promoting Psychological Well-Being in Children with Acute and Chronic Illness. Social Work Education, 30 (6), 718-719. 10.1080/02615479.2011.586578


Contact details

Primary office location

Level 5, Room 501A
New Zealand

Web links