Overview

Chronic diseases are long lasting conditions with persistent effects. Their social and economic consequences can impact on peoples’ quality of life. Chronic conditions are becoming increasingly common and are a priority for action in the health sector.

Many people with chronic conditions do not have a single, predominant condition, but rather they experience multimorbidity—the presence of 2 or more chronic conditions in a person at the same time.

AIHW commonly reports on 10 major chronic condition groups: arthritisasthmaback paincancercardiovascular diseasechronic obstructive pulmonary diseasediabetes, chronic kidney diseasemental health conditions and osteoporosis.

These chronic conditions were selected for reporting because they are common, pose significant health problems, have been the focus of ongoing AIHW surveillance efforts and, in many instances, action can be taken to prevent their occurrence.

More reports and statistics on chronic disease can be found under Burden of diseaseBiomedical risk factors and Life expectancy & deaths.

Highlights