Injury overview

injury to lower leg

Injuries are a major health care issue in Australia, and the leading cause of death for people aged 1–44.

In the latest years for which data were available, injuries in Australia accounted for:

Injuries caused around:

575,000 hospitalisations in 2020–21

2,200 per 100,000 population

13,400 deaths in 2019–20

53 per 100,000 population

This report divides hospitalisations and deaths from injury into 15 categories, representing the main causes of injury in Australia (see Figure 1). These categories are based on the causes of injury listed in each hospital and death record.

Falls are the most common cause of both hospitalisations and deaths from injury in Australia. The next most common causes of injury leading to hospitalisation in 2020–21 were contact with objects (including blunt or sharp objects) and transport accidents. For deaths in 2019–20, the next most common causes were suicide, accidental poisoning, and transport accidents.

Each of these 15 main causes of injury is explored on its own page.

Figure 1: Causes of injury hospitalisations and deaths

2 matching bar graphs on separate tabs, 1 for hospitalisations and 1 for deaths. The bars represent the 15 cause categories. The reader can choose to display either crude rate per 100,000 or number. For hospitalisations, falls shows the highest rate at 949 per 100,000.

For more detail, see data tables A1–3 and D1–3.