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About asthma

Asthma is a long-term condition that affects a person's breathing. It is a significant cause of ill health and poor quality of life.

This is a snapshot of the latest statistics on asthma in Australia. More detailed information can be found in Asthma in Australia 2011, and in other publications from the AIHW and the Australian Centre for Asthma Monitoring (ACAM).

Information in the asthma snapshot was last reviewed in April 2013.

Asthma by numbers


Infographic showing 1 in 10 Australians have asthma

1 in 10

Australians suffer from asthma.

That's over 2 million people.


Infographic showing 36% reduction in GP encounters by children, 1998-99 to 2010-11

36% reduction

in GP encounters by children for asthma between 1998–99 and 2010–11. That's from 30 to 19 encounters per 100 population aged 0–14.

For people aged 15+, this rate fell 39%, from 14 to 9 encounters per 100 population.


Infographic showing $655 million was spent on asthma in 2008-09

$655 million

was spent on asthma in 2008–09.

That's 0.9% of all direct health expenditure on diseases.


Infographic showing 37,830 hospitalisations for asthma in 2010-11

37,830

hospitalisations for asthma in 2010–11.

That's 0.4% of all hospitalisations.


Infographic showing 416 deaths due to asthma in 2010

416

deaths due to asthma in 2010.