Featured reports

Alcohol, tobacco & other drugs in Australia 

The consumption of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs is a major cause of preventable disease and illness in Australia. This report consolidates the most recently available information on alcohol, tobacco and other drug use in Australia, including key trends in the availability, consumption, harms and treatment for vulnerable populations. Further, information on a range of health, social and economic impacts of alcohol, tobacco and other drug use are highlighted.

National Drug Strategy Household Survey 2016: detailed findings 

This 2016 National Drug Strategy Household Survey report shows that: the decline in daily smoking slowed in 2016 but improvements were seen among people living in the lowest socioeconomic area; certain groups disproportionately experience drug-related risks and recent use of illicit drugs was particularly high for people who identified as homosexual or bisexual; just under 4 in 10 Australians either smoked daily, drank alcohol in ways that put them at risk of harm or used an illicit drug in the previous 12 months.

Latest reports

MyHealthyCommunities: Tobacco smoking rates across Australia 2014–15 

This MyHealthyCommunities release provides information from 2014–15 on the daily tobacco smoking rates across Australia. Results are presented by the 31 Primary Health Network (PHN) areas.

It includes an interactive web tool that can be used to show how your local PHN area compares with the national average and allows comparisons between PHN areas.

Update: Age-standardised rates have been added to existing data to enable fairer comparisons across PHNs that have different age structures.

Risk factors to health 

Health risk factors are attributes, characteristics or exposures that increase the likelihood of a person developing a disease or health disorder. Behavioural risk factors are those that individuals have the most ability to modify. Biomedical risk factors are bodily states that are often influenced by behavioural risk factors.

National Drug Strategy Household Survey (NDSHS) 2016—key findings  

This web-based release presents a summary of the national findings from the 2016 National Drug Strategy Household Survey. The 2016 NDSHS show that younger people (aged under 30) were smoking less, drinking less and using fewer illicit drugs in 2016 than in 2001. However, for people in their 40s, 50s and 60s, there was little to no change in drug usage behaviours over this period but their use of some drugs has increased between 2013 and 2016.

Tobacco indicators: measuring midpoint progress—reporting under the National Tobacco Strategy 2012–2018 

This report presents midpoint data for several tobacco indicators using various data sources and collections years. The majority of indicators show that favourable progress has been made, particularly for exposure to tobacco smoke, uptake of smoking, transition to established smoking and regular smoking among young people, adults and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. However, some groups achieved greater progress than others, and inequalities within particular groups increased for some indicators.

Tobacco Indicators Baseline Data: Reporting under the National Tobacco Strategy 2012–2018 

This report presents baseline data for several tobacco indicators using various data sources and collections years. The baseline showed that some groups are at much higher risk of smoking or being exposed to second-hand smoke, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, those living in remote or socioeconomically disadvantaged areas, and single parents with dependent children.

National Drug Strategy Household Survey detailed report: 2013 

This 2013 National Drug Strategy Household Survey report shows that: - fewer Australians are smoking daily and are smoking less cigarettes; - fewer people are exceeding the lifetime risk and single occasion risk guidelines for alcohol use; - overall illicit drug use has remained stable but some drugs have declined and some have increased; - alcohol continues to be the drug of most concern to the community but an increasing number of people are concerned about meth/amphetamines.

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.

Risk factor trends: age patterns in key health risk factors over time 

This report presents comparisons over time for different age groups for key health risk factors, including overweight and obesity, physical inactivity, poor diet, smoking and excessive alcohol consumption. The good news is that smoking rates have declined, particularly among younger people. However, overweight/obesity rates have increased for virtually all age groups, especially females aged 12 to 44.

Drugs in Australia 2010: tobacco, alcohol and other drugs 

Drugs in Australia 2010 provides a comprehensive summary of Australians' consumption of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs and use of treatment services, drawing on the latest statistics from major national collections. It also includes information about drug-related health issues, and drugs in the context of crime and law enforcement.

2010 National Drug Strategy Household Survey report 

This 2010 National Drug Strategy Household Survey report shows: positive and significant reductions since 2007 in daily tobacco smoking; mixed findings on alcohol consumption and risk; and a small overall rise in illicit drug use. In terms of attitudes to drugs, excessive alcohol use and tobacco smoking were nominated as the two most serious concerns to the community - and there were higher levels of support than previously for tobacco and alcohol harm reduction policies.

Anti-tobacco programs for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people 

Tobacco use is a major preventable contributor to the gap in life expectancy between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and other Australians. This resource sheet reviews the evidence on current anti-smoking interventions. It outlines what works, what doesn't, and what further research is needed. Topics include: smoking rates and life expectancy, why Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people smoke, health care interventions, community interventions, and legislative responses. To be effective, strategies to reduce tobacco use need to acknowledge the historical context for its use, as well as the many socioeconomic influences.

Smoking and pregnancy 

Smoking during pregnancy is associated with poorer birth outcomes. This report is one of a series of initiatives commissioned by the National Advisory Group on Smoking and Pregnancy as part of an overall strategy to reduce smoking in pregnancy in Australia. It presents data on pregnancy and births according to the mother's smoking status during pregnancy for the period 2001 to 2003, using the National Perinatal Data Collection (NPDC). Data from the NPDC were available for this report from five states and territories: New South Wales, Western Australia, South Australia, the Australian Capital Territory and the Northern Territory, representing 53.5% of women who gave birth in Australia in 2003. Tasmania and Queensland began collecting smoking data in 2005, so data from these jurisdictions will be available for reporting in the future.