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Skin cancer in Australia

Skin cancer (melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancers) accounts for the largest number of cancers diagnosed in Australia each year. This report provides an overview of skin cancer in Australia, risk factors, and key summary measures, including incidence, hospitalisations, survival and mortality. It shows that while the age-standardised incidence rate has risen for most age groups, for Australians aged less than 40, the incidence rate for melanoma of the skin has declined.

Use of medicines by older people with type 2 diabetes

This report describes dispensing patterns of glucose lowering medicines and medicines for other conditions associated with diabetes in a concessional population cohort of Australians aged 65 and over diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. It uses linked data from the National Diabetes Services Scheme and the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme to explore medicine supply patterns in 2012 by age and time since diabetes diagnosis. It shows that, in general, the longer the time since diagnosis, the more likely it is that an individual would be supplied with all medicine types and the more intense their glucose lowering treatment regimens would be. This report highlights the complexity of pharmacological management in older people with type 2 diabetes and the diversity of medicine supply patterns in relation to age and time since diabetes diagnosis.

Medication use by Australia's prisoners 2015: how is it different from the general community?

This bulletin compares medications taken by prisoners with people in the general community. The poor health and complex health needs of prisoners are reflected in the number and types of medications they take. Prisoners were more likely than those in the general community to be taking medication for health problems including mental health issues, addictions and chronic conditions. Contextual information from a focus group of prison health professionals is used to discuss some of the differences between prescribing in a prison and in the general community.

Australian Burden of Disease Study: impact and causes of illness and death in Australia 2011

This report analyses the impact of nearly 200 diseases and injuries in terms of living with illness (non-fatal burden) and premature death (fatal burden). The study found that chronic diseases such as cancer, cardiovascular diseases, mental and substance use disorders, and musculoskeletal conditions, along with injury contributed the most burden in Australia in 2011. Almost one third of the overall disease burden could be prevented by removing exposure to risk factors such as tobacco use, high body mass, alcohol use, physical inactivity and high blood pressure.

The health of Australia's prisoners 2015

The health of Australia’s prisoners 2015 is the 4th report produced by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare on the health and wellbeing of prisoners. The report explores the conditions and diseases experienced by prisoners; compares, where possible, the health of prisoners to the general Australian community and provides valuable insight into the use of prison health services. New to the 2015 report are data on the disabilities or long-term health conditions of prisoners entering the prison system (prison entrants), self-assessed mental and physical health status of prisoners and data on smoke-free prisons.

Access to health services by Australians with disability 2012

In 2012, 17% of people with disability who needed to see a GP delayed or did not go because of the cost; 20% who needed to see a medical specialist did not go mainly due to the cost; and 67% who needed to see a dentist delayed seeing or did not go because of the cost. Compared with people with disability living in Major cities, people with disability living in Outer regional and Remote areas had lower use rates of services provided by GPs, medical specialists and dentists as well as coordinated care provided by different types of health professionals. They were more likely to visit a hospital emergency department for health issues that could potentially be dealt with by non-hospital services, and to face barriers to accessing health services.

Australian Burden of Disease Study: fatal burden of disease in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people 2010

This is the second report in the Australian Burden of Disease Study series. It provides estimates of fatal burden for 2010 for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population as well as estimates of the gap in fatal burden between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians. Injuries and cardiovascular diseases contributed the most fatal burden for Indigenous Australians (22% and 21% respectively), followed by cancer (17%).Subsequent reports in this series will provide estimates of the non-fatal burden and the contribution of various risk factors to disease burden in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population. 

Australian Burden of Disease Study: fatal burden of disease 2010

This is the first report in the Australian Burden of Disease Study series. It provides estimates of fatal burden for 2010 showing the contribution of each disease group by age and sex. The three leading disease groups were Cancer (35%), Cardiovascular diseases (23%) and Injuries (13%), and these contributed more than 70% of total fatal burden.

Healthy life expectancy in Australia: patterns and trends 1998 to 2012

Between 1998 and 2012, life expectancy at birth has risen by 4 years for boys and nearly 3 years for girls. And because disability prevalence rates have been falling over this period, the gain in disability-free life expectancy has been even greater for boys (4.4 years, compared with 2.4 years for girls). Older Australians have also seen increases in the expected number of healthy years, but this has been accompanied by more years needing assistance with everyday activities. Over this period, the gender gap in life expectancy narrowed across all ages, and the gap in the expected years living free of disability also reduced across most ages.

Assessment of the Australian Rheumatology Association Database for national population health monitoring: working paper

This working paper uses the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare’s recently developed assessment framework to assess the suitability of the Australian Rheumatology Association Database as a potential new data source for population health monitoring of inflammatory arthritis.

An AIHW framework for assessing data sources for population health monitoring: working paper

When identifying potential data sources for population health monitoring, it is important to ensure they are 'fit-for-purpose'. This working paper outlines the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare’s 3-step process used to assess potential data sources for population health monitoring purposes.

Assessment of the coding of ESKD in deaths and hospitalisation data: a working paper

Monitoring the impact of end-stage kidney disease (ESKD) is important in planning for future health needs of the population. This working paper uses linked data from Western Australia and New South Wales to assess the likelihood that a patient who is hospitalised with ESKD will have ESKD recorded on their death record, in order to establish whether mortality records in Australia reflect the actual disease pattern of people with ESKD.The study confirms that the ESKD codes used in the mortality data to estimate ESKD incidence are likely to underestimate the impact of ESKD—there is a high proportion of patients who are hospitalised with ESKD who do not have ESKD recorded on their death certificates.

Estimating the prevalence of osteoporosis in Australia

This report presents information about the prevalence and impact of osteoporosis in Australians aged 50 and over. A broad range of data sources show that osteoporosis prevalence markedly increases with age and is more common in women than in men. Osteoporosis is one of several risk factors for minimal trauma fracture, with minimal trauma fracture of the hip being one of the most serious possible outcomes of osteoporosis. Although the rate of minimal trauma hip fracture for people aged 50 and over has decreased over the last ten years, the number of hip fractures continues to increase due to the increasing number of older adults in Australia.

Mortality inequalities in Australia 2009–2011

Despite relatively high standards of health and health care in Australia, not all Australians fare equally well in terms of their health and longevity. Substantial mortality inequalities exist in the Australian population, in terms of overall mortality, and for most leading causes of death, and these inequalities are long-standing.

Mortality from asthma and COPD in Australia

Asthma death rates in Australia are high compared with many other countries and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a leading cause of deaths in Australia and internationally. This report provides current information about mortality due to these conditions in Australia, examining trends over time, seasonal variation, international comparison and variation by age, sex, remoteness, Indigenous status, country of birth and socioeconomic disadvantage.

Arthritis and other musculoskeletal conditions across the life stages

Arthritis and other musculoskeletal conditions affect an estimated 6.1 million Australians (approximately 28% of the total population) across all ages. Due to their diverse nature, there is considerable variation in the prevalence, treatment and management, and quality of life of people with these conditions across various life stages. This report describes these impacts in the following age groups: childhood (0–15), young adulthood (16–34), middle years (35–64), older Australians (65–79) and Australians aged 80 or over.

OECD health-care quality indicators for Australia 2011-12

This report summarises information Australia provided in 2013 to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development’s Health Care Quality Indicators 2012–13 data collection and compares data supplied by Australia in 2013 to data Australia supplied in previous years, and to data reported by other OECD countries in the OECD’s Health at a glance 2013: OECD indicators.

Type 2 diabetes in Australia's children and young people: a working paper

Type 2 diabetes in Australia's children and young people identifies and describes national data sources to monitor incidence and prevalence of type 2 diabetes in children and young people and assesses their suitability for this task. This working paper also presents, for the first time, national incidence and prevalence estimates of type 2 diabetes in Australia's children and young people.

Australia's mothers and babies 2011

In 2011, 297,126 women gave birth to 301,810 babies in Australia. This was an increase of 2,247 births (0.8%) than reported in 2010, and a total increase of 18.3% since 2002. Nationally, the proportion of teenage mothers (younger than 20) declined from 3.9% in 2010 to 3.7% in 2011, compared with 4.9% in 2002.

Monitoring pulmonary rehabilitation and long-term oxygen therapy for people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a major cause of death and disability in Australia. While pulmonary rehabilitation and long term oxygen therapy are recommended treatments for COPD, there is currently no national information about the supply and use of these therapies. This report outlines a proposed approach to monitoring access to, and utilisation of, these therapies, by capitalising on existing data sources and identifying data development opportunities.

The inclusion of Indigenous status on pathology request forms

Under the National Indigenous Reform Agreement in 2008, the Council of Australian Government agreed to data quality improvements which are focussed on improving Indigenous identification in key data sets. This report outlines work towards the inclusion of Indigenous status on pathology request forms as a way to improve Indigenous identification in national cancer, communicable disease and cervical screening registries.

Smoking and quitting smoking among prisoners 2012

This bulletin presents results from the 2012 National Prisoner Health Data Collection, focusing on smoking and smoking cessation behaviours of prisoners in Australia. In 2012, 84% of prison entrants were current smokers, which is around 5 times the proportion of the general community. Quitting smoking in prison is difficult: 35% of prisoners who were about to be released tried to quit during their time in prison, but only 8% were successful.

Chronic kidney disease: regional variation in Australia

Chronic kidney disease is a common and serious problem in Australia and its management can be resource intensive, particularly for the most severe form of the disease: end-stage kidney disease. Rates of chronic kidney disease vary by geographic location.This report shows:people from Remote and very remote areas were 2.2 times more likely to die from chronic kidney disease than people from Major cities.people from Very remote areas were at least 4 times more likely to start kidney replacement therapy (dialysis or kidney transplant) than people from non-remote areas.

Asthma hospitalisations in Australia 2010-11

This report provides an overview of hospitalisation patterns over time and across population groups. Asthma hospitalisation rates decreased between 1998-99 and 2010-11, by 33% for children and 45% for adults. The rate of hospitalisation for asthma among Indigenous Australians was 2.1 times the rate for Other Australians. Asthma hospitalisation rates were also higher for people living in areas with lower socioeconomic status.

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