Non-admitted patients

Non-admitted patients are patients who do not undergo a hospital’s formal admission process and do not occupy a hospital bed. Instead, they receive services as an outpatient. The types of care they receive include consultations with specialist medical practitioners, the provision of diagnostic or other procedures, and allied health or clinical nurse specialist services.

The non-admitted patient care data collections have information about services provided to non-admitted patients in Australian public hospitals, including the types of services provided, the types of clinics in which services take place, the users of services and the funding of services.

These data collections exclude non-admitted patient services provided during emergency department care and to admitted patients, as well as service events that deliver non-clinical care (e.g. in-home maintenance and cleaning).

Explore more details on the care provided to non-admitted patients via the links at the bottom of the page.

Non-admitted patients

All data in these visualisations are available for download in the Data & downloads section of the MyHospitals website.

Non-admitted patients bookmark 1

38 million non-admitted patient service events were provided by public hospitals in various settings in 2019–20.

Visualisation not available for printing

Non-admitted patients bookmark 2

34% of service events in 2019–20 were for people 65 and over.

Visualisation not available for printing

Non-admitted patients bookmark 3

21% of service events were for people living in areas classified as the lowest socioeconomic status.

Visualisation not available for printing

Around 38 million non-admitted patient care services events were provided

In 2019–20:

  • 38.2 million non-admitted patient care service events were provided for public patients—852,000 fewer service events (2.2%) than were provided in 2018–19. The reduction was likely due to restrictions introduced in response to COVID-19
  • the majority of service events were provided to individuals (97%) and 2.5% were provided as group service events
  • the majority of non-admitted service events (88%) were funded by sources categorised as Other funding (e.g. funding source was reported as Health service budget). 12% of service events were funded through the Medicare Benefits Scheme, and less than 1% were funded by either the Department of Veterans’ Affairs.

Types of non-admitted patient services

In 2019–20:

  • 18.3 million non-admitted patient care service events, or nearly half (48%) of service events, were provided in Allied health and/or clinical nurse specialist intervention clinics
  • 11.1 million service events were provided in Medical consultation clinics (29%) and the remainder were provided in Diagnostic services (15%) and Procedural clinics (8%).

Who received non-admitted patient services?

Of the 28.6 million episode-level service events reported in 2019–20:

  • over half of service events were for females (56%)
  • 57% of service events were for people aged 45 and over
  • 5.8% of service events were for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians and 92% were for non-Indigenous Australians
  • 60% of service events were for people living in Major cities and 19% were for people living in Inner regional areas
  • 21% of service events were for people living in areas classified as being in the lowest socioeconomic group.

Where do I find more information?

More information on these data are available in the Non-admitted patient care 2019–20 data tables, refer to tables 2.1–S2.4 and S3.1.

Definitions of the terms used in this section are available in the Glossary.

Non-admitted patient care data collections

Non-admitted patient care data encompasses:

  • clinic-level data—which is based on data in the National Non-admitted Patient Care Aggregate Database (NNAPC(agg)D), and includes information on:
    • the type of outpatient clinic
    • individual and group service events
    • funding source of service events
    • whether the service involved care from multiple health care providers
  • episode-level data—which is based on data in the National Non-admitted Patient Database (NNAP(el)D), and includes information on:
    • selected patient characteristics
    • service delivery mode and setting
    • type of care provided
    • additional information that is also provided as part of clinic-level data.

Data suppliers provided either episode- or clinic-level data. In 2019–20, 75% of data provided to the non-admitted patient care data collections was episode-level data, and the aim is for the collection to eventually only report on episode-level data.

Clinic-level data are primarily used to report on 'total service events'. Where clinic-level data were unavailable, episode-level data were used to supplement the NNAPC(agg)D which enabled us to report on all non-admitted patient care services in the reporting year.

For the NNAP(el)D, counts represent each service event, not each patient. Therefore, patients who receive more than one non-admitted patient service event in the reporting period will have more than one record in the NNAP(el)D. Due to the changing scope of the Non-admitted patient care data collections, 2019–20 data are not comparable with previous reporting years and no time series data are provided.

Technical specifications for these collections can be found in the About the data section or on the Meteor website.