Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (2022) Health expenditure Australia 2020-21, AIHW, Australian Government, accessed 30 November 2022.
Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. (2022). Health expenditure Australia 2020-21. Retrieved from https://www.aihw.gov.au/reports/health-welfare-expenditure/health-expenditure-australia-2020-21
Health expenditure Australia 2020-21. Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, 23 November 2022, https://www.aihw.gov.au/reports/health-welfare-expenditure/health-expenditure-australia-2020-21
Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. Health expenditure Australia 2020-21 [Internet]. Canberra: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, 2022 [cited 2022 Nov. 30]. Available from: https://www.aihw.gov.au/reports/health-welfare-expenditure/health-expenditure-australia-2020-21
Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) 2022, Health expenditure Australia 2020-21, viewed 30 November 2022, https://www.aihw.gov.au/reports/health-welfare-expenditure/health-expenditure-australia-2020-21
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Estimates for total health spending capture the national aggregate of all spending on health goods and services for recurrent and capital purposes.
In 2020–21, Australia spent an estimated $220.9 billion on health. In real terms, this represented a 7.1% growth in spending from 2019–20, equating to an additional $14.6 billion (Figure 1a). The real growth in spending in 2020–21 (7.1%) was higher than the average over the decade from 2010–11 (3.4%), however, the 2020–21 value was broadly consistent with the longer-term trend. This suggests a ‘rebound’ in spending following low growth during the early stages of the pandemic associated with activity restrictions (Figure 1b). While the overall amount of spending might appear similar to previous trends, there were some signs of the pandemic impacting on the type of spending, particularly through vaccines and the government COVID-19 response funding arrangements.
The line graph shows that total health spending in both current and constant prices increased each year from 2010–11 to 2020–21. Total health spending in current prices increased from $131.1 billion in 2010–11 to $220.9 billion in 2020–21. In the same period, total health spending in constant prices increased from $158.5 billion to $220.8 billion.
The line graph shows the total health spending, in the two years during the COVID-19 pandemic (2019–20 to 2020–21) compared to the trend of the previous 10-year period (2008–09 to 2018–19). Assuming the average growth rate for the previous 10-year period remains the same for 2019–20 and 2020–21, the trend amounts of total health spending in constant prices for 2019–20 and 2020–21 were $210.5 billion, $218.0 billion respectively. While the actual amounts for these years were $206.3 billion and $220.9 billion, respectively.
Following the beginning of the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in late February 2020, the Australian Government entered a National Partnership Agreement – the National Partnership on COVID-19 response (NPCR) with state and territory governments. This agreement aims to provide financial assistance for the additional costs incurred by state and territory health services in responding to the COVID-19 outbreak, and efforts to minimise the spread of COVID-19 in the Australian community.
This agreement has 3 funding arrangements in 2020–21:
In addition, governments implemented a range of policies and programs in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including referred and unreferred medical services through MBS telehealth, mental health programs, public health mainly related to primary care respiratory clinics, COVID-19 testings and vaccinations (outside the NPCR), MBS-funded COVID-testing, distribution of masks and personal protective equipment (PPE) to health systems and a national communication campaign.
The main areas in which spending increased were:
View Table A6 Excel file (XLS 23KB)
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