Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (ACCHO): A health organisation controlled by, and accountable to, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in those areas in which the organisation operates. An individual ACCHO aims to deliver holistic, comprehensive and culturally appropriate health care to the community that controls it.

Aboriginal health worker: A health worker who provides clinical and primary health care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander individuals, families and community groups.

Aboriginal Medical Service (AMS): A health service funded principally to provide services to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander individuals that is not necessarily community controlled. AMSs that are not community controlled are government health services run by a state or territory government. Non-community controlled AMSs mainly exist in the Northern Territory and the northern part of Queensland.

adult prison: A place administered and operated by a justice department, where individuals are detained while under the supervision of the relevant justice department on a pre-sentence or sentenced detention episode.

arthritis: An umbrella term for more than 100 medical conditions that affect the musculoskeletal system, specifically joints. The three most common forms of arthritis are osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and gout.

asthma: A chronic inflammatory disorder of the airways. This inflammation causes recurrent episodes of wheezing, breathlessness, chest tightness and coughing, particularly in the night or in the morning.

bloodborne virus: A virus that lives in the blood and is transmitted by blood-to-blood contact. Examples of bloodborne viruses include Hepatitis C and HIV.

cancer: A group of several hundred diseases in which abnormal cells are not destroyed by normal metabolic processes, but instead proliferate and spread out of control (after being affected by a carcinogen or after developing from a random genetic mutation) and form a mass called a tumour or neoplasm. In this data collection, cancer includes leukaemia, lymphoma, kidney cancer, bladder cancer, digestive system cancer, stomach cancer, bowel cancer, breast cancer, genital cancer, head and neck cancers, liver cancer, lung cancer, nervous system cancers and skin cancer (excluding non-melanoma skin cancer).

cardiovascular disease: Any disease that affects the circulatory system, including the heart and blood vessels. Examples include coronary heart disease, heart failure, rheumatic fever and rheumatic heart disease, congenital heart disease, stroke and peripheral vascular disease.

clinic visit: A face-to-face consultation for which an entry is made in the health service record, other than for routine, household-type treatment such as adhesive plasters or paracetamol.

communicable disease: Diseases that are capable of being transmitted between individuals, including AIDS, HIV, hepatitis, malaria, meningitis, sexually transmitted infections, and vaccine- preventable diseases such as chickenpox and influenza.

diabetes: A disease marked by high blood glucose levels resulting from defective insulin production, insulin action or both. The three main types of diabetes are Type 1 diabetes, Type 2 diabetes and gestational diabetes.

digestive conditions: Includes abdominal pain, diarrhoea, gallstones, gastroenteritis, hernias, incontinence, indigestion, intestinal diseases, liver disease, malabsorption syndromes, oesophageal disease, pancreatic disease and peptic ulcer. Excludes digestive system cancers such as bowel, liver and stomach cancer.

dischargee: A full-time prisoner aged at least 18, who expects to be released from prison within the 4 weeks following the time of interview.

entrant: A person aged at least 18, entering full-time prison custody, either on remand (awaiting a trial or sentencing) or on a sentence. Prisoners who have been transferred from one prison to another are not included as entrants.

full-time equivalent staff: Full-time equivalent staff units are the on-job hours paid for (including overtime) and hours of paid leave of any type for a staff member (or contract employee where applicable) divided by the number of ordinary-time hours normally paid for a full-time staff member when on the job (or contract employee where applicable) under the relevant award or agreement for the staff member (or contract employee occupation where applicable). Hours of unpaid leave are excluded. Contract staff employed through an agency are included where the contract is for the supply of labour (for example, nursing) rather than of products (such as maintenance). A full-time equivalent of 1.0 means the person is equivalent to a full-time worker, while a full-time equivalent of 0.5 signals the person works half-time.

health-related discharge plan: A plan that supports the continuity of health care between the prison health service and the community, based on the individual needs of the prisoner.

illicit drug use: Includes use of:

  • any drug that is illegal to possess or use
  • any legal drug used in an illegal manner, such as
    • a drug obtained on prescription, but given or sold to another person to use
    • glue or petrol which is sold legally, but is used in a manner that is not intended, such as inhaling fumes
    • stolen pharmaceuticals sold on the black market (such as pethidine)
  • any drug used for ‘non-medical purposes’, which means drugs used
    • either alone or with other drugs to induce or enhance a drug experience
    • for performance enhancement (for example, athletic)
    • for cosmetic purposes (for example, body shaping).

Indigenous: For administrative collections, an Indigenous person is a person of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander descent who identifies as such.

juvenile detention centre: A place administered and operated by a department responsible for juvenile justice, where young people under the age of 18 are detained while under the supervision of the department on a pre-sentence or sentenced detention episode.

malignancy: Includes most type of cancers but excludes non-melanoma skin cancer in this data collection.

mental illness/mental health disorder: The range of cognitive, emotional and behavioural disorders that interfere with the lives and productivity of people. Mental health disorders are diagnosable by certain criteria, and include depression, anxiety, substance use disorders, personality disorders, and psychoses.

methadone program: A program for opiate addicts, usually conducted in an outpatient setting. These programs use a long-acting synthetic opiate medication, usually methadone or levo-alpha acetyl methadol, administered orally for a sustained period at a dosage sufficient to prevent opiate withdrawal, block the effects of illicit opiate use and decrease opiate craving.

musculoskeletal condition: Long-term conditions affecting a skeletal muscle, tendon, ligament, joint or blood vessel that services skeletal muscles and any related tissues. Includes back injuries, back pain, bone disease, bursitis, joint diseases, muscular disease, spinal diseases and tendonitis. Excludes arthritis, injury or cancer in this data collection.

musculoskeletal injury: Recent/short-term injuries to a skeletal muscle, tendon, ligament, joint or blood vessel that services skeletal muscles and any related tissues.

opiate/opioid substitution treatment (OST): A form of healthcare for heroin and other opiate-dependent people using prescribed opioid agonists, which have some similar or identical properties to heroin and morphine on the brain and which alleviate withdrawal symptoms and block the craving for illicit opiates. OST includes methadone, buprenorphine, and buprenorphine with naloxone.

pregnancy: The carrying of one or more offspring that has been confirmed by medical test with or without the assistance of a medical professional. Pregnancy includes babies carried to full term, abortions and miscarriages.

prisoner: Adult prisoners (aged 18 and over) held in custody whose confinement is the responsibility of a correctional services agency. Includes sentenced prisoners and prisoners held in custody awaiting trial or sentencing (remandees). Juvenile offenders, persons in psychiatric custody, police cell detainees, those in periodic detention, asylum seekers or Australians held in overseas prisons are not included.

prison mental health service: A health service that provides screening of prisoners at intake, does psychiatric assessments, provides therapy or counselling by mental health professionals and distributes psychotropic medication. This may be part of or separate to the prison heath service.

psychosis: A mental disorder in which the person has strange ideas or experiences that are unaffected by rational argument and are out of keeping with the views of any culture or group that the person belongs to.

psychological conditions: Include depression, anxiety, psychosis, substance abuse, attention deficit/hyperactivity, adjustment, dissociation, impulse disorder, personality disorder and sleeping disorder.

reception: The formal process whereby sentenced persons are received into prison, either on remand or sentence.

remand: When a person is placed in custody while awaiting the outcome of a court hearing.

repeat medication: Prescribed medication regularly taken by the prisoner, including depot and oral medications. Excludes routine household-type medications, such as paracetamol, that are taken on an as-needed basis.

respiratory conditions: Conditions of the respiratory system, including airways, lungs and the respiratory muscles, such as respiratory disease (chronic respiratory disease, lung disease and respiratory tract infections), bronchitis, diphtheria, influenza, colds, croup, pneumonia, sinusitis, legionnaires’ disease, severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), tuberculosis and whooping cough. Excludes asthma and cancer.

risk factor: Any factor that represents a greater risk of a health disorder or other unwanted condition or event. Some risk factors are regarded as causes of disease, other are not necessarily so.

skin conditions: In this data collection, includes burns, scalds, dermatitis, fungal skin diseases, infectious skin disease, pressure sores, psoriasis, rosacea, ulcers and warts. Excludes cancer.

smoking status: The extent to which an adult was smoking at the time of interview. It refers to smoking of tobacco, including manufactured (packet) cigarettes, roll-your-own cigarettes, cigars, pipes and other tobacco products. The smoking categories include:

  • daily smoker—an adult who reported at the time of the interview that he or she regularly smoked one or more cigarettes, cigars or pipes per day
  • weekly smoker—an adult who reported at the time of the interview that he or she smoked occasionally, not every day, but at least once a week
  • irregular—an adult who reported at the time of the interview that he or she smoked occasionally, but less than once a week
  • ex-smoker—an adult who reported he or she did not currently smoke but had in the past
  • never smoked—an adult who reported he or she had never smoked a full cigarette.

social worker: Someone with a bachelor degree in social work who provides counselling and support to prisoners.

throughcare: Can be described as the coordinated and integrated approach to the provision of services to meet the needs of prisoners, from the time of sentencing throughout their imprisonment and after their release. Working between services based both in the prison and the community is essential.

transgender: A person’s sex may change during their lifetime as a result of procedures known as: sex change; gender reassignment; transsexual surgery; transgender reassignment; or sexual reassignment. Throughout this process, which may be over a considerable period, sex could be recorded as either male or female. Prisoners who identified as engaging in any of these procedures or who were currently undergoing gender reassignment were recorded as transgender.