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Definitions for data items in the health expenditure data cubes


Financial year  |  Source of fundsArea of expenditure  |  Constant price expenditure  |  Measures


Financial year

This cube contains national health expenditure data for the period 1960-61 onwards, although only for selected years in the early part of the period. Years where data are not available are 1961-62, 1962-63, 1964-65, 1965-66, 1967-68, 1968-69 and 1970-71.

'Year' refers to the financial year 1 July to 30 June. 

Source of funds

The health expenditure cubes show who funds the spending on health goods and services, rather than who actually incurs the expenditure. The broad funding sources are government (separated into Australian Government and state/local governments), and non-government (private health insurance funds, individuals, injury compensation insurers and other non-government). 

Australian Government comprises the Department of Veterans' Affairs, the Department of Health and Ageing and Treasury, the health insurance premium rebate and a residual category named Other Australian Government. The Department of Health and Ageing and Treasury is composed of Australian Government specific purpose payments (SPPs) and national partnership payments (NPPs) to states and territories, and other Department of Health and Ageing. The health insurance premium rebate category has two components, namely 'Premium rebate (claimed through funds)' and 'Premium rebate (claimed through tax)'.

The category 'Injury compensation insurers' consists of workers' compensation insurers and motor vehicle third-party insurers.

'Other non-government' includes other funding by some service providers (e.g. from interest earned).

Area of expenditure

Data for individual areas of health expenditure, such as public hospitals, medical services and community health are obtained by drilling down through this menu. Also available are various totals as defined below:

Total health expenditure is the sum of direct expenditure and tax expenditure.

Direct expenditure is the sum of recurrent expenditure and capital expenditure.

Recurrent expenditure is the sum of expenditures on all health goods and services, except for health capital.

Hospitals consists of public hospitals and private hospitals.

Medications comprises benefit-paid pharmaceuticals and all other medications.

Constant price expenditure

Constant price health expenditure is expressed in terms of the prices of the current reporting year. This concept is explained in more detail in AIHW Health expenditure Australia publications.

 Measures

The measures available in this cube are:

  • health expenditure in current prices ($ million)  
  • health expenditure in constant prices ($ million)  
  • health expenditure per person in current prices ($)  
  • health expenditure per person in constant prices ($)  
  • the ratio (%) of health expenditure to gross domestic product (GDP) in current prices (National cubes only).  

For further definitions, refer to the Technical notes in Health expenditure Australia publications.