Overview

Veterans—current or former serving members of the Australian Defence Force—and their families are an important population group for health and welfare monitoring. The unique nature of Australian Defence Force service promotes protective factors that can lead to improved health outcomes but also exposes members to risk factors that may lead to poor health during and after their military service.

Latest findings

In 2014–15, 9 in 10 people who have served in the ADF had consulted a GP in the last 12 months All cause death rates are lower for serving and ex-serving ADF personnel than for the Australian population In 2009–2010, one-quarter of former ADF peacekeepers reported being very socially isolated while deployed Death rates due to injury are generally lower, or similar, for serving and ex-serving men than for Australian men In 2015, 20% of ADF personnel who discharged between 2010 and 2014 had a university degree As at 30 June 2017 there were an estimated 165,000 veterans who were DVA clients Smoking rates for people who have served in the ADF were similar to those who have never served In 2015–16, 9% of DVA hospitalisations for male patients aged 55 and over were for anxiety disorders Death rates from chronic disease are lower, or similar, for serving and ex-serving men than for Australian men By age, the leading causes of death are similar between serving and ex-serving men and the Australian population Ex-serving men aged under 30 had a suicide rate 2.2 times that of Australian men the same age, for 2014–2016 In 2002–2016 the age-adjusted suicide rate was lower for serving and reserve men than for all Australian men Men 18–34 who ever served in the ADF are less likely to be current or former smokers than those who have never served In 2001–2016 there were 373 suicides in serving, reserve & ex-serving ADF personnel with 1 day of service since 2001 For 2002 to 2016 ex-serving men had an age-adjusted suicide rate 18% higher than for all Australian men

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