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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.

Patterns in use of aged care: 2002-03 to 2010-11

While permanent care in a residential care facility remains a key service for many older Australians, in recent years greater emphasis has been placed on the provision of home-based support. This report examines how this shift has affected the way that people use aged care programs, and investigates the initial take-up of care. The analysis shows that use of aged care programs before entering permanent residential care is increasing, as is the use of any aged care services in a person’s last year of life.

People using both Disability Services and Home and Community Care in 2010-11: technical report

This report describes the linkage process used to identify the extent of joint use of Disability Services and the Home and Community Care program. The methods used to derive analysis variables are also described. Under one-fifth of Disability Service users also used HACC in 2010-11. The analysis of joint program use is presented in the companion report People using both Disability Services and Home and Community Care 2010–11.

Creating nationally-consistent health information: engaging with the national health information committees

This document provides guidance on engaging with the national processes responsible for health information and data standards. It has been developed to ensure data collected are consistent, accurate and useful for policy, planning and program management.

Report on the use of linked data relating to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

The Council of Australian Governments funded the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare and the Australian Bureau of Statistics to review past, ongoing and planned data linkage studies that have an Indigenous focus. This report reviews these data linkage activities and is a companion document to the National Best Practice Guidelines for Data Linkage activities relating to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

Thematic list of projects using linked data relating to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

The Council of Australian Governments directed the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare and the Australian Bureau of Statistics to review past, ongoing and planned data linkage studies that have an Indigenous focus.  This document thematically lists these data linkage activities, and is a companion document to the Report on the use of linked data relating to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

Deriving key patient variables: a technical paper for the Hospital Dementia Services Project

This report describes the methods used for the Hospital Dementia Services Project to derive dementia status, complete hospital stays and post-hospital destination using New South Wales hospital data for 2006-07. Comparisons of estimates using these key variables show that the method used to derive the variables can substantially affect analytical results on use of hospitals. This report demonstrates the importance of using analytical data and methods that match the particular policy or research question being asked.

Children and young people at risk of social exclusion: links between homelessness, child protection and juvenile justice

Following the release of a study exploring the feasibility of linking three community-sector data collections, the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare was funded to link available child protection, juvenile justice and Supported Accommodation Assistance Program data. Analysis of the linked data shows that children and young people who are involved in one of these three sectors are more likely to be involved in another of the sectors than the general population. While the results are limited by data availability, the project highlights the valuable information that can be gained by data linkage.

Linking SAAP, child protection and juvenile justice data: technical report

Following the release of a study exploring the feasibility of linking three community-sector data collections, the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare was funded to link child protection, juvenile justice and Supported Accommodation Assistance Program data. This report describes the process used to link these collections. The analysis of the linked data is in a companion report, Children and young people at risk of social exclusion: links between homelessness, child protection and juvenile justice.

National best practice guidelines for data linkage activities relating to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people: 2012

In 2008, the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) agreed to a set of targets for 'Closing the Gap' in disadvantage between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and non-Indigenous Australians. Currently, progress is difficult to measure accurately because Indigenous status is either missing or inconsistently reported across data sets. To ensure a consistent approach to dealing with Indigenous status reporting, COAG directed the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare and the Australian Bureau of Statistics to develop national best practice guidelines for linking data related to Indigenous people. This report offers guidance on how to derive Indigenous status when it is missing or inconsistently reported, in a way that protects privacy and individuals' right to self-identification.

Principles on the use of direct age-standardisation in administrative data collections: for measuring the gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians

This report recommends that the direct method of age-standardisation be used for purposes of comparing health and welfare outcome measures (e.g. mortality rates, life expectancy, hospital separation rates, disease incidence rates etc.) of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population and non-Indigenous Australians. The report provides consistency and guidance on when and how to use the direct age-standardisation method and under what circumstances it should not be used.

Pathways in aged care: do people follow recommendations?

Eligibility for key aged care programs is assessed by Aged Care Assessment Teams (ACATs). These teams also make recommendations on the preferred long-term setting for receiving care; that is, in the person's home or in a residential care facility.  Analysis shows that there was considerable variation in care pathways within recommendation group. Rates of transition into permanent residential care varied with the use of community care and residential respite care. One-quarter of ACAT clients-including some recommended to live in residential care-did not use aged care services in the 2 years after their first assessment.

Time trends and geographical variation in re-admissions for asthma in Australia

Re-admissions for asthma can be considered an indicator of health system performance in relation to the management of patients with asthma. This bulletin examines the overall rate of re-admissions for asthmas in Australian and investigates time trends in re-admissions for asthmas as well as differences according to age, sex, socioeconomic status and remoteness of residence.

Comparing an SLK-based and a name-based data linkage strategy: an investigation into the PIAC linkage

In 2005, the Institute was funded to create a linked aged care database to enable analysis of pathways through aged care services. The linkage strategy for the project involved using a Statistical Linkage Key (SLK) because of the lack of either a name or a common person identifier on the data sets being linked. This paper validates the results obtained using the SLK linkage strategy by comparing it directly with a name-based linkage strategy.

Pathways in Aged Care: program use after assessment

Analysis of care pathways provides information that is useful to both policy planners and service providers alike. The Pathways in Aged Care (PIAC) cohort study linked aged care assessment data for a cohort of 105,100 people to data sets showing use of five main aged care programs and deaths over 4 years. This report presents an overview of the PIAC cohort, investigating care needs, assessment patterns, common care pathways, time to entry to permanent residential aged care and time to death after assessment for use of aged care services.

Dementia and the take-up of residential respite care: an analysis using the PIAC cohort

In the current policy and service environment, respite care is a key service designed to provide support for carers and those they care for. Linked aged care program data for the Pathways in Aged Care (PIAC) cohort study allows analysis of the take-up of residential respite care by looking at 32,000 cohort members who had an approval of such care. This report presents detailed analysis of take-up rates and factors that affect the take-up of residential care. In particular the report investigates whether dementia, carer availability and English speaking background affect the take-up of residential care.

Dementia and the take-up of residential respite care

In the current policy and service environment respite care is a key service designed to provide support for carers and those they care for. Linked aged care program data for the Pathways in Aged Care (PIAC) cohort study allows analysis of the take-up of residential respite care by looking at 32,000 cohort members who had an approval of such care. This bulletin presents take-up rates and factors that affect the take-up of residential respite care. In particular, the bulletin investigates whether dementia, carer availability and English speaking background affect the take-up of residential respite care.

Pathways through aged care services: a first look

Analysis of care pathways provides information that is useful to both policy planners and service providers alike. The Pathways in Aged Care (PIAC) cohort study linked aged care assessment data for a cohort of 105,100 people to data sets showing use of five main aged care programs and deaths over four years. Of particular interest in terms of care pathways is the smaller new-pathways cohort of 77,400 people who had not previously used aged care services that required and aged care assessment for access. This report presents the first findings from analysis of the new pathways cohort, investigating common care pathways, time to entry to permanent residential aged care and time to death after the first assessment for use of aged care services.

Incorporating HACC use into aged care pathways: a technical report for the PIAC project

In general, the aged care program data used in the Pathways in Aged Care (PIAC) project relating to 105,000 older Australians contain dates of service use. However, there are two complications with the Home and Community Care (HACC) data when integrating service use event data into care pathways: (a) the data available for the project only indicate quarters of service use, and (b) not all HACC agencies participate in the data collection. This report describes how these matters are being treated for the PIAC project. Using this approach 72,000 PIAC cohort members had 107,000 periods during which they were accessing HACC services over the 4 years from July 2002.

Movement from hospital to residential aged care

The movement of people between acute hospital care and residential aged care has long been recognised as an important issue, but existing national data sets provide only limited information on such movement. This report presents the first comprehensive statistical results into issues affecting movement from hospital into residential aged care, using linked hospital care and residential aged care data for 2001-02. In particular, factors affecting admission into residential care on discharge from hospital are examined.

Linking SAAP, child protection and juvenile justice data collections: a feasibility study

Linking the SAAP, child protection and juvenile justice data collections would provide valuable information about the characteristics of people who are involved in one or more of these sectors. This information would support policies and programs aimed at implementing, monitoring and evaluating targeted intervention strategies. In this report, the feasibility of linking these three data collections is investigated. The authors conclude that linkage is technically feasible and that both the SAAP and juvenile justice data collections have data currently suitable for linkage. Linkage with the child protection data collection would be dependent on the successful implementation of the planned national minimum data set.

Veterans' use of health services

This report uses linked aged care and Department of Veterans' Affairs (DVA) administrative data to examine patterns of use of DVA-funded medical and allied health services by DVA gold cardholders aged 70 years and over living in permanent residential aged care, and compare these patterns with those of gold cardholders of the same age and sex living in the community.

Movement from hospital to residential aged care: preliminary results

The interface between acute hospital care and residential aged care has long been recognised as an important issue in aged care services research. Current hospital and residential aged care national data sets have been designed primarily to provide data on the specific program rather than to examine program interfaces. However, using event-based data linkage it is possible to link the two data sets thereby allowing analysis of the hospital and aged care interface. This report provides preliminary results from this linkage process when applied to data for four states and two territories for 2001-02, and investigates a particular issue - the use of residential aged care for interim care following a period in hospital.

Report on the pilot test of the community-based palliative care client data collection

This report outlines the need for a data set for community-based palliative care services that is relevant to national policy development and accountability, and provides details of a pilot test of the data set which aimed to evaluate the data items and their permissible values. This data set lays the foundation for the future agreement of a national minimum data set, which would see the collection of ongoing data about community-based palliative care clients for national collection and reporting. The data items within the draft client data set specification include items that relate to: the patient, the episode of palliative care, the episode of grief and bereavement counselling, and each service contact within these episodes.

National palliative care performance indicators: results of the 2006 performance indicator data collection

This report presents the findings of the second national collection of performance indicator data from Australia's palliative care sector. The information collected was designed to support the calculation of four national performance indicators that were developed and agreed by representatives of the states and territories and the Australian Government on the Palliative care Intergovernmental Forum. The four performance indicators are based on the goals and objectives of the National Palliative Care Strategy and provide some information on the extent to which the Strategy has been implemented.

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