Year of analysis

In Australia, causes of death can be assessed using the year that the death occurred or the year that it was registered with the Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriage (RBDM). In this report, data are presented for deaths in 2014, 2018 and 2022 and are based on the year of registration (with the RBDM).

Using the year of registration of the death facilitates comparisons over time. However, due to data revisions, the latest year of data can underestimate the occurrence of some causes of death. Most notably, these causes are those that occur in deaths certified by a coroner. The anomaly arises due to the time that is required for investigation into the intent and causes of these deaths. Revisions are made (by the ABS) to the deaths data on two occasions after the initial (preliminary) release of the cause of death data as a revised and then a final version. Deaths registered in 2014 and 2018 are based on the final version of cause of death data; deaths registered in 2022 are based on the preliminary version and are subject to further revision by the ABS. It is not unusual for data in the preliminary version to have a higher number of deaths with an undetermined cause than would be expected in the final version, once coroners have been able to investigate the cause of death more thoroughly.