Preferences are where the actual appearance and functionality of Paua can be changed from agency to agency. There are a large number of options that can be changed. New preferences are being added all the time so this documentation is simply an overview of what is available. There is explanatory text on the preference pages to aid in understanding what they do and how to set them.

The Preference pages are accessed from the Administration menu under Preferences.

There are multiple tabs to cover groups of preferences.

General Preferences


This is only editable by users with Sys Manager privilege and for New Zealand agencies it should always be (GMT + 12) Auckland.

Client List Columns

This preference determines the columns that are displayed when listing clients. If nothing is ticked then Paua will display a default list.

Contact List Columns

This preference determines what columns are displayed when contacts are listed. Again, a default set of columns will be displayed if nothing is chosen here.

Limit Person Name change to Admin users

If this checkbox is ticked then names of clients and family members cannot be changed after the record is saved except by admin users. This is an attempt to prevent difficulties where one user changes the name and another user then can’t find the client.

Report durations in hours and minutes

In reports where there is a column for Hours Spent it is displayed as a decimal number of hours. For example 1 Hour and 20 Minutes would be 1.33 Hrs. If you tick this box then all Hours Spent values will be displayed in hours and minutes. The previous example of 1 Hour and 20 Minutes would then be 1:20

Age Range replaces DOB

This is a feature used by some agencies where recording birthdates is not possible or not practical. If this option is ticked then Paua will display a dropdown of Age Ranges rather than a Date of Birth field. The default ranges are 0*5Yrs,6*10Yrs,11*13Yrs,14Yrs and Over but the age ranges can be set to other values as required by your agency.

Maximum number of hours on client contacts

This is a preference to prevent the Hours dropdown in Contacts from becoming unmanageable. The maximum defaults to 9 hours but if you agency has longer sessions than this then the maximum can be set here.

Number of items in paginated lists

Throughout Paua there are lists of records that have a paginator at the bottom. The default number of items in the lists is 12 but this can be changed to a number that you choose with this preference.

Filter contact types by programme

Some agencies have a large number of Contact Types and some of these only apply to certain programmes. If this preference is selected then when you edit Programmes in dropdown maintenence there will be a list of Contact Types and you can tick the ones that apply to the current programme.

Filter optional fields by programme

Some agencies have a large number of Optional Fields and some of these only apply to certain programmes. If this preference is selected then when you edit Programmes in dropdown maintenence there will be a list of Optional Fileds and you can tick any that you want to suppress for the current programme.


If this option is selected then Paua will not know which optional fields are available for a client until the client is assigned a programme. This means that when you initially create the client there will be no optional fields, but after the record is saved and re-edited the relevant optional fields will be available.


Suppression of optional fields only applies to fields directly on the client record and not to Person Details as one person may have several client engagements in different programmes.

Prevent Case Notes after exit

The check box Prevent Case Notes after exit is self explanatory and can be set to enforce data integrity especially if you are exporting to PRIMHD when activities after the client exit date will be rejected.

Login and Security

Minimum Password Length

The default minimum password length in Paua is 6 characters.

You can specify a longer length here if you wish to enforce longer passwords. This will also affect the length of passwords generated by the system when you reset a password.

Password reset interval

By default Paua users never have to change their passwords. If a number is entered in this preference then after that number of days from a previous password change a user will be forced to change their password again.

Enable Optional Features

This gives a list of optional features that can be enabled for your agency by ticking the boxes.

Enable Family Module

Family module enables clients to be treated as family groups with one Primary Family Client and multiple Subsidiary Family Clients When clients are grouped in this way all client contacts, issues, outcomes etc are aplied once to the Primary client so that all data is in one easy to find location.

Enable Programme Transfers

If a client changes from one programme to another it is usually best in Paua to exit the client from the first programme and then create a new client engagement in the new programme. However, if the client is entered into the incorrect programme, you may want to just transfer them to the correct one. This is not possible in the normal way in Paua as the programme cannot be changed. If the Transfer option is enabled then it is possible to change the programme but a record is kept of the change.


All of these options are what elsewhere in Paua are referred to as Standard Forms. They are standard questionaires that have been designed to assess Alcohol and Drug and Mental health and wellbeing.

  • ADOM Alcohol and Drug Outcome Measurement
  • SACS Substance and Choices Scale
  • HoNOSCA; HoNOS; HoNOS65+ Health of the Nation Outcome Scales
  • KESSLER Kessler psychological distress scale
  • MAST-G Michigan Alcohol Screening test


If PRIMHD is enabled you will be able to export mental health and addiction information to MoH/ Health boards. Note that in addition to ticking the box there are many tasks that are required to setup codes etc to ensure that the output is coded to adhere to the MoH standards.

Enable Residential Programmes

This option allows you to specify certain programmes as residential. When a client is entered in to a residential programme the client page in Paua contains an extar tab for information relating to the residence. For example start and end date and any ‘Residence Leave’ that is taken during the stay.

The residential data is exported to PRIMHD is PRIMHD is enabled.

Enable Drug Treatment Programme

Drug treatment programme is a specific corrections programme consisting of a residential programme and an aftercare programme. If this option is enabled then there will be extra tabs to collect data relation to these programmes for any client enrolled in a programme that has been specified as either a DTP Residential or a DTP aftercare programme.

Enable Onward Referral Monitoring

This option adds several extra date fields to the main client details page to capture the date that a client was referred on to another provider and when that provider first sees the referred client. It is then possible to do a Stats Breakdown by Onward Referral Time

Enable Online Backups

If online backups are enabled then a nightly backup of your agency’s data will be available to download from the Administration sub menu.


These backups are in addition to normal database and server backups which are manged by Paua Software. They are only for peace of mind and are in no way essential.

Suppress Standard Features

This gives a list of standard features in Paua that some agencies may not want and hence they can be suppressed by ticking the corresponding boxes.

Client Notes

Client notes are just free text notes which can be added against the client record. Some agencies suppress the client notes preferring all notes to be recorded as Client Contacts which contain more data attributes and are analysed in some reports.


The Paua clendar is a relatively simple calendar intended for booking resources such as meeting rooms and worker time. If your agency already uses a full featured calendar such as Outlook then you will probably want to suppress the Paua calendar.

Group Module

The group module records group sessions that are run by the agency along with group members and attendance. Not all agencies run group sessions and hence the ability to supress the entire group module.

User Defined Forms

User defined forms provide a customised template for entering user data. However the user defined forms do not form part of Paua reporting and for analysis and reporting Client Assessments are a more powwerful tool.

Enquiries Module

This module is for recording and analysing enquiries to the agency in order to see if you are meeting the needs of the public. Not all agencies choose to use this module.

Evaluation Forms

Evaluation forms are user defined survey type forms which are sumbitted anonamously be your clients as evaluations of there experiances with the agency.

Client Assessments

Client assessments are user defined questionaires with questions that all have numeric answers on a scale of one to ten. This makes them simple to analyse both to measure individual progress after answering the questionaire at different stages of the client engagement and also for analysing trends across a cohort of clients.

Client Evaluations

Client evaluations are similer to Client Assessments except that the questions can include selecting options from a list or specifying degree of agreement with a statement etc.

Client Properties

Client properties are a series of check boxes that appear on a separet tab on the client record. They are set up by the user and are designed to hold ‘yes/no’ type information about the client eg. Pregnent?, Unemployed? etc. Client properties are one of the attributes by which a Stats Breakdown can be broken down.

Case Note Security

Access rights to client data in Paua is determined here.

There are primarily three access setings that can be used.

  • Default level - full access to everyone
  • Case note security by programme - each user has access to client case notes in specified programmes
  • Only owner can see case notes - Only the client’s worker and secondary worker (if specified) can access the client’s case notes.

If you choose Case note security by programme then when accessing a user record in the Administration module there will be a list of programmes displayed and you tick the ones that the user is permitted to see.


If you use Case note security by programme and then add a new programme to the system then you will find that none of the users has access to the new programme and you will have to go through and grant access to the users who require access.

In addition to the three levals specified there is a checkbox Supervisor can see all case notes. This setting overrides the access level for supervisor level users enabling them to see all case notes.

By default the access level applies only to case notes (Contacts). However there are two checkboxes that enable the access level to be applied to both attachments and general notes. ie. if the user does not have access to the case notes then they will not have access to the attachments etc.

Finally there is the option of applying the case note security to the entire client record. If this option is selected then a user without access to the caes notes will not have access to any of the client data. Note thet the client will appear in search lists etc. but the user will not be able to click and bring up the client details.

Optional Fields

Optional fields are fields that are available in Paua but are not necessarily enabled. Most but not all of these fields are dropdown lists.

Client Fields

These fields if enabled all appear on the main client page as dropdowns. The values can be entered into the dropdowns in the Administration module under Dropdown Maintenance.

Person Fields

These fields appear on the Person Details page. and are all dropdown lists.

Contact Fields

Travel Time is a field consisting of hours and minutes. Otherwise fields are dropdowns. Fields appear on the Client Contacts/Case Notes page.

Group Fields

Fields associated with items in the Groups Module

Client Issue Fields

This section is just for the Issue Type field that can be used as a super category of Issue

Mandatory Fields

Some Paua fields are always mandatory for the data integrity of the system. However some agencies may want additional mandatory fields ticking any of the Mandatory Fields checkboxes will make the corresponding field mandatory in the application.

Mandatory Fields on Exit

Selecting one of these fields will mean that although you can save a client without filling in the field you will not be able to exit the client.

Iwi Mandatory for Maori

If this checkbox is ticked then the system will insist on an Iwi being entered for anybody with Maori Ethnicity.

Suppressed Fields

Unused fields can clutter up your page and some agencies do not require certain information. Ticking one of these boxes will mean that the field no longer appears in Paua.

Temporary Settings

Settings here are intended to be, as the name suggests, used just for the duration of your current login session. They will automatically revert to default the next time you login.

Allow inactive values in dropdowns

If this checkbox is set then throughout Paua inactive values which are normally hidden in dropdowns will be dsipalyed and become useable. This is useful when running retrospective reports where you need perhaps to select a report based on an inactive user or programme.