Overview: International health data comparisons, 2020

Comparing health and health care data between countries facilitates international comparative reporting, supports policy planning and decision-making, and enables health-related research and analysis.

The interactive data visualisations across these web pages allow you to compare data from 37 Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD) member countries across a range of health and health care indicators, with a focus on Australia’s international performance.

The visualisation on this page provides a snapshot of Australia’s health and health care performance in comparison with the OECD average and with other OECD countries.

The pages that follow allow you to compare a wider range of indicators across OECD countries at a glance, across the following themes:

  • life expectancy, mortality and causes of death
  • health status and morbidity
  • long-term care
  • health risk factors
  • pharmaceutical market
  • remuneration of health professionals
  • health insurance
  • Waiting times for elective surgery.

How does Australia’s health compare to other OECD countries?

Click through the categories at the top of the visualisation to change the set of indicators presented.

In 2019 (or based on the nearest available year of data):

  • Australia’s life expectancy at birth was 82.8 years—above the OECD average of 80.7 years, and 7th highest among OECD countries. The highest life expectancy was in Japan, where people could expect to live 84.2 years at birth
  • based on measured data, Australia ranked 6th out of 22 countries with available data for the proportion of people aged 15 and over who are overweight or obese (65%)—this was greater than the OECD average of 59%
  • Australia was among 22 OECD countries in which 100% of the total population was covered by public or private health insurance
  • the median waiting time from specialist assessment to treatment for hysterectomy in Australia was above the OECD average, at 61 days, compared with the 52 day average.

This figure compares various health indicators such as life expectancy, health risk factors and health insurance across OECD countries in 2019 or nearest year. Australia was ranked higher than the OECD average for life expectancy at birth, deaths due to diseases of the circulatory system and infant mortality.