Appendix A: Definitions and classifications

This appendix contains technical information on how health services and conditions were identified in this study using the datasets in the National Integrated Health Services Information (NIHSI). 

Table A1: Identification of relevant codes used in NHISI datasets to identify services

Types of services

Data source

Item codes

Specialist palliative care



Inpatient hospital care

Hospital Admitted Patient Care

Care type: 3 (palliative care) or
principal or additional diagnosis: Z51.5

Outpatient clinics

Outpatient Non-Admitted Patient care

Outpatient clinic type tier: 20.13

Consultations with palliative care specialists

Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS)

Medicare service provider codes (SPR_REG_SPEC): 043, 077

Other relevant services



Outpatient clinics (allied health)

Outpatient Non-Admitted Patient care

Outpatient clinic type tier 2: 40.35

MBS-subsidised services

GP attendances

Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS)

MBS items: BTOS 0101, 0102, 0103

Specialist consultations:

Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS)

MBS items: Medicare service provider codes (SPR_REG_SPEC):


Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS)

MBS items: 017,049,097, 804


Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS)

MBS items: 004,084


Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS)

MBS items: 008,088


Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS)

MBS items: 009,089

Respiratory physicians

Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS)

MBS items: 014,094


Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS)

MBS items: 016,096

Practice nurse

Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS)

MBS items: BTOS 0110

Allied health

Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS)

MBS items: BTOS 0150

Potentially non-beneficial treatments


Pathology services

(Haematology, Chemical, Microbiology, Immunology, Tissue Pathology, Cytology, Genetics, Infertility And Pregnancy Tests, Simple Basic Pathology Tests)

Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS)

MBS items: MBS Category 6

Diagnostic imaging services

(including X-rays, CT scans, ultrasound scans, MRI scans and nuclear medicine scans)

Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS)

MBS items: MBS Category 5

Chemotherapy (including radiotherapy, immunotherapy)Hospital Admitted PatientProcedure codes: 13760, 13939, 13950, 14247, 14249, 15000, 15003, 15012, 15100, 15103, 15224, 15239, 15254, 15269, 15303, 15304, 15311, 15312, 15319, 15320, 15327, 15338, 15339, 15342, 15351, 15500, 15503, 15506, 15509, 15518, 15521, 15524, 15527, 15530, 15533, 15536, 15539, 15550, 15556, 15600, 16003, 16009, 16012, 16015, 16018, 34521, 34524, 34528, 34530, 34533, 35321, 50950, 90764, 96199
DialysisHospital Admitted PatientProcedures codes: 13100, 13104, 13106, 13109, 13110

* BTOS: Broad Type of Service in MBS.

Source: Department of Health 2022.

Table A2: Health conditions in trajectories of death that most likely require end-of-life care

Trajectories of death (end-of-life disease trajectories)

Health conditions and relevant ICD-10 codes applied to the underlying cause of death

Terminal illness (malignant neoplasms and associated conditions)

'Cancer': C00–C97, D45, D46, D47.1 and D47.3–D47.5

Organ failure

Heart failure:

I11.0: Hypertensive heart disease with (congestive) heart failure

I13.0: Hypertensive heart and kidney with (congestive) heart failure

I13.2: Hypertensive heart and kidney disease with both (congestive) heart failure and kidney failure

I50.0: Congestive heart failure

I50.1: Left ventricular failure

I50.9: Heart failure, unspecified

U82.2: Chronic heart failure

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease:

J44.0: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease with acute lower respiratory infection

J44.1: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease with acute exacerbation, unspecified

J44.8: Other specified chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

J44.9: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, unspecified

U83.2: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

Liver failure:

U84.3: Chronic liver failure

K70.4: Alcoholic hepatic failure

K71.1: Toxic liver disease with hepatic necrosis

K72.0: Acute and subacute hepatic failure

K72.1: Chronic hepatic failure

K72.9 : Hepatic failure, unspecified



B22: Human immunodeficiency virus [HIV] disease resulting in other specified diseases

F00.0*: Dementia in Alzheimer's disease with early onset (G30.0†)

F00.1*: Dementia in Alzheimer's disease with late onset (G30.1†)

F00.2*: Dementia in Alzheimer's disease, atypical or mixed type (G30.8†)

F00.9*: Dementia in Alzheimer's disease, unspecified (G30.9†)

F01.0: Vascular dementia of acute onset

F01.1: Multi-infarct dementia

F01.2: Subcortical vascular dementia

F01.3: Mixed cortical and subcortical vascular dementia

F01.8: Other vascular dementia

F01.9: Vascular dementia, unspecified

F02.0*: Dementia in Pick's disease (G31.0†)

F02.1*: Dementia in Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (A81.0†)

F02.2*: Dementia in Huntington's disease (G10†)

F02.3*: Dementia in Parkinson's disease (G20†)

F02.4*: Dementia in human immunodeficiency virus [HIV] disease (B22†)

F02.8*: Dementia in other specified diseases classified elsewhere

F03: Unspecified dementia

G10: Huntington's disease

G30.0: Alzheimer's disease with early onset

G30.1: Alzheimer's disease with late onset

G30.8: Other Alzheimer's disease

G30.9: Alzheimer's disease, unspecified

G31.0: Circumscribed brain atrophy

A81.0: Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease


G20: Parkinson's disease

G21.0: Malignant neuroleptic syndrome

G21.1: Other drug-induced secondary parkinsonism

G21.2: Secondary parkinsonism due to other external agents

G21.3: Postencephalitic parkinsonism

G21.4: Vascular parkinsonism

G21.8: Other secondary parkinsonism

G21.9: Secondary parkinsonism, unspecified

G22*: Parkinsonism in diseases classified elsewhere


R54: Senility 

* An optional additional code for the manifestation.

† The primary code is for the underlying disease.

Note: Various studies have identified health conditions that are grouped into trajectories of death that are most likely to require end of life care – terminal illness (cancer), organ failure, and frailty (Lunney et al. 2002; Seow et al. 2018). For this report, this list of ICD-10 AM codes is used to classify each relevant underlying cause of death in the National Death Index.

Note: The list of ICD codes is based on the Murtagh (2014) minimal estimate, with some minor revisions to reflect current data and definitions.

Table A3: Health conditions used to estimate population in need of palliative care

Cause of death

ICD-10 codes

Neoplasm (excludes benign neoplasms)


Heart disease


Cerebrovascular disease


Renal disease

N17, N18, N28

Liver disease


Respiratory disease

J06-J18, J20-J22, J40-J47, J96

Neurodegenerative disease

G10, G20, G35, G122, G903, G231

Alzheimer’s disease

F01, F03