Type 1 diabetes incidence

Type 1 diabetes is a lifelong autoimmune disease that often has onset in childhood or early adulthood, but can occur at any age. The cause is unknown, but it is believed to be an interaction of genetic and environmental factors. All people with type 1 diabetes need insulin to manage their condition.

In 2018:

  • just over 2,800 people were diagnosed with type 1 diabetes—12 cases per 100,000 population, or about 1 in every 8,000 Australians
  • the incidence rate was higher in males (14 per 100,000) than females (10 per 100,000)
  • about 1,700 (60%) people diagnosed with type 1 diabetes were aged under 25, with the highest rate of diagnosis among those aged 10–14 (34 cases per 100,000 population)
  • the incidence rate was lower in Remote and very remote areas (9 cases per 100,000 population) compared with other areas (12–14 cases per 100,000)—rates in Remote and very remote areas might be influenced by the potentially lower capture on the NDR of people living in these areas (see Methods and classifications)
  • incidence rates across socioeconomic areas varied, at 11–14 cases per 100,000 population.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

In 2018, 129 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people were diagnosed with type 1 diabetes (16 cases per 100,000 population).

After adjusting for differences in the age structures between the populations, the incidence rate of type 1 diabetes was similar among Indigenous Australians and non-Indigenous Australians (12 and 11 cases per 100,000 population, respectively).

Small geographic areas

Over the five year period 2014–2018, incidence rates for type 1 diabetes were:

  • highest (15–16 cases per 100,000 population) in the Primary Health Network (PHN) areas of:
    • Nepean Blue Mountains (New South Wales)
    • Murray (Victoria)
    • Central Queensland
    • Wide Bay (Queensland)
    • Sunshine Coast (Queensland)
    • Western Victoria
  • lowest in the PHN areas of Northern Territory (6 cases per 100,000 population), and Central and Eastern Sydney (New South Wales) (8 cases per 100,000 population)
  • highest in the smaller geographical areas (statistical area level 3; SA3) of Bundaberg (Queensland), Barwon-West (Victoria), and Moira (Victoria) (18–19 cases per 100,000 population)
  • lowest in the SA3 of Hurstville, Sydney Inner City, and Fairfield (New South Wales) (about 4–5 cases per 100,000 population).
Visualisation not available for printing

To explore the type 1 diabetes data by trends and demographics, see data visualisation ‘Type 1 diabetes’.

To explore type 1 diabetes data by geographic areas, see data visualisation ‘Type 1 diabetes: geographical areas’.