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Australia's welfare 2017: in brief presents highlights from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare’s 13th biennial report on the nation’s welfare, Australia’s welfare 2017.
Australia ranks in the bottom third of OECD countries for ‘work-life balance’
2.2 million people aged 15–64 were enrolled in formal study
55% of Indigenous people in Remote and Very remote areas speak an Australian Indigenous language
49% of people with dementia in 2015 lived in cared accommodation
Indicators are simple statistics that summarise often complex issues. Most indicators serve as sentinel indicators for the topic they represent; that is, they are useful to highlight particular results in an area of interest and help people to ask questions about why the result is as it is.
Australia's welfare includes an indicator framework based on 5 domains and 19 themes, shown here, and has 61 indicators.
A wellbeing domain was included for the first time in Australia's welfare 2017. It incorporates 7 themes, as shown here, and 15 indicators.
Find out more: Chapter 9.1 'The Australia's welfare indicator framework' in Australia's welfare 2017.
Trend data are presented for indicators wherever possible. Some examples are presented here.
Find out more: Chapter 9.2 ‘Indicators of Australia’s welfare’ in Australia’s welfare 2017.
There is a lot of international interest in wellbeing, including 'subjective wellbeing' or 'happiness'. Several summary measures are used to compare how countries are faring. An objective and a subjective measure are presented here.
Australia performs exceptionally well on the objective measure, the Human Development Index, which aggregates achievement in life expectancy, education and standard of living. We also rank highly on subjective wellbeing (happiness), when asked to evaluate the quality of our lives on a scale of 0 to 10.
In today's world of 'big data', governments, businesses, the community and individuals have access to an unprecedented volume and variety of data, at an ever-increasing rate.
The Productivity Commission's Inquiry on Data availability and use highlights the critical importance of using data to achieve positive social and economic outcomes and of working closely with the community to obtain 'social licence' to support this endeavour.
The person-centred data model illustrated here recognises that many factors affect a person's interaction with health and welfare services and supports. Making the most of available data across the ful spectrum of health and welfare activity offers an opportunity to produce more meaningful, person-centred information. This evidence can provide a basis for better policy decisions and, ultimately, produce better outcomes for the Australian population.
Find out more: Chapter 1.7 'Understanding health and welfare data' in Australia's welfare 2017.
Even with our best efforts, there are gaps in health and welfare data. For instance, data to understand a specific area of interest may not be collected. Further, major items may be missing from existing data collections, or not collected by all providers.
Gaps in data and evidence include:
The AIHW works closely with data providers to make better use of existing data and identify and prioritise data gaps across a range of sources.
The AIHW is working to fill data gaps in several areas, including by:
Find out more: Chapter 1.7 'Understanding health and welfare data' in Australia's welfare 2017. Also, see the 'What is missing from the picture?' sections throughout the main report.
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