Thursday, 20 July 2017

Australia's hospitals at a glance 2015-16 [AIHW]

Australia's hospitals 2015-16 at a glance provides summary information on Australia's public and private hospitals.

* In 2015-16, there were 10.6 million hospitalisations (6.3 million in public hospitals, 4.3 million in private hospitals).
* The average length of stay was over 5 days (5.7 days in public hospitals; 5.2 days in private hospitals).
* 1 in 4 hospitalisations involved a surgical procedure.
* 27% were emergency admissions.
* 149,000 hospitalisations involved a stay in intensive care.
* 60% were same-day hospitalisations.

Download report: Australia's hospitals at a glance 2015-16

Monday, 17 July 2017

Aboriginal Online Health Portal (Cancer Council NSW)

Cancer Council NSW has a new online Aboriginal Health Portal – specific and tailored cancer information for Aboriginal communities.

The portal is divided into community information, information for health workers and research findings on Indigenous cancer. There is also information about a research project Cancer Council NSW funded and conducted called APOCC (Aboriginal Patterns of Cancer Care).

Links to the Cancer Council NSW main website also provide a wealth of further information.

The burden of musculoskeletal conditions in Australia: a detailed analysis of the Australian Burden of Disease Study 2011

This report presents findings from the Australian Burden of Disease Study 2011 on the burden of musculoskeletal conditions in Australia. Musculoskeletal conditions were the 4th leading contributor to total burden of disease in Australia, with back pain and problems, osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis being the greatest contributors to the musculoskeletal burden. The burden due to musculoskeletal conditions generally decreased over time, varied by condition severity and by population group, and some of the burden was attributed to modifiable risk factors such as overweight and obesity.

Download report: The burden of musculoskeletal conditions in Australia: a detailed analysis of the Australian Burden of Disease Study 2011.

The burden of chronic respiratory conditions in Australia: a detailed analysis of the Australian Burden of Disease Study 2011

This report presents information on the disease burden of chronic respiratory conditions using data from the Australian Burden of Disease Study 2011. Respiratory conditions were the 6th leading contributor to total burden of disease in Australia, with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), asthma and upper respiratory conditions being the greatest contributors to the respiratory burden. The burden due to respiratory conditions generally decreased over time, varied by condition severity and by population group, and some of the burden was attributed to modifiable risk factors such as tobacco use.

Download report: The burden of chronic respiratory conditions in Australia: a detailed analysis of the Australian Burden of Disease Study 2011.

Wednesday, 28 June 2017

Alcohol and other drug treatment services in Australia 2015-16 [AIHW]

In 2015-16, about 796 alcohol and other drug treatment services provided just over 206,600 treatment episodes to an estimated 134,000 clients.

* The top 4 drugs that led clients to seek treatment were alcohol (32% of treatment episodes), cannabis (23%), amphetamines (23%), and heroin (6%).
* The proportion of episodes where clients were receiving treatment for amphetamines has continued to rise over the 5 years to 2015-16, from 12% of treatment episodes in 2011-12 to 23% in 2015-16.
* The median age of clients in AOD treatment services is rising, from 31 in 2006-07 to 33 in 2015-16.

Media release: More Australians seeking drug treatment-amphetamine treatment more than doubles.

Download report: Alcohol and other drug treatment services in Australia 2015-16.

Friday, 23 June 2017

New eBook now available on illicit drug use among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

The Australian Indigenous Alcohol and Other Drug Knowledge Centre (the Knowledge Centre) have launched a new eBook which focuses on illicit drug use among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Based on the 2016 Review of illicit drug use among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people the team from the Knowledge Centre hopes that the electronic version will be a good learning tool.

This review provides detailed information on the extent of illicit drug use among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, including overall self-reported prevalence and prevalence by type of substance. It outlines the health and social and emotional wellbeing harms associated with substance use, as well as the associated hospitalisations, mortality, and wider social impacts.

Download: Illicit Drug Use (e-book).

Non-admitted patient care 2015-16: Australian hospital statistics [AIHW]

Non-admitted patient care 2015-16: Australian hospital statistics

In 2015-16, about 33.4 million non-admitted patient service events were provided by 604 public hospitals, including:
* 15.3 million service events in allied health and/or clinical nurse specialists clinics;
* 9.7 million service events in medical consultation clinics;
* 2.6 million service events in procedural clinics.

Download report: Non-admitted patient care 2015-16: Australian hospital statistics

Wednesday, 14 June 2017

Burden of cancer in Australia: Australian Burden of Disease Study 2011 [AIHW]

Cancer was the greatest cause of health burden in Australia in 2011, accounting for around one-fifth of the total disease burden. Most (94%) of this burden was due to dying prematurely, with only a small proportion of the burden due to living with a cancer diagnosis. This report explores in further detail the burden of cancer in Australia, including cancer burden in Aboriginal and Torres Strait islander people, and by remoteness and socioeconomic group. It also looks at how the cancer burden has changed since 2003, and the potential burden of cancer expected in 2020.

Media release: Cancer impacting Australia's health more than any other group of diseases

Download report: Burden of cancer in Australia: Australian Burden of Disease Study 2011

Friday, 9 June 2017

Patient experiences in Australia in 2015-16 [AIHW]

In the latest web update, Australian adults report their experiences on more than 20 aspects of health and care. Good experiences are an important component of quality healthcare, along with clinical effectiveness and patient safety. Information from 2013-14 to 2015-16 is presented by the Primary Health Network (PHN) areas across Australia, covering topics including self-reported health status, use of health services and cost barriers to accessing services.

In 2015-16, at least four out of five Australians in all PHN areas rated their health positively, yet the percentage of Australians reporting a long-term health condition ranged from 43% to 63% across PHN areas. Australians also reported differences in accessing healthcare services due to cost across PHN areas in 2015-16, with cost barriers nearly three times as high in some areas compared with others.

Download Web update: Patient experiences in Australia in 2015-16.

Healthy Communities: Immunisation rates for children in 2015-16 [AIHW]

Immunisation is important in protecting children from harmful infectious diseases. Our most recent immunisation report shows the large majority of Australian children continue to be immunised and that rates have increased over time, but there is still room for improvement, especially in some local areas.

Healthy Communities: Immunisation rates for children in 2015-16 focuses on local-level immunisation rates for 5 year old children, which have improved nationally and in most local areas over five years. It also includes latest results for children aged 1, 2 and 5 years. Rates are presented for the 31 Primary Health Network (PHN) areas, more than 300 smaller local areas and around 1500 postcodes across Australia. Rates are also presented for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children.

Download report: Healthy Communities: Immunisation rates for children in 2015-16.

Media release: Immunisation rates improve for Australian children.

Wednesday, 7 June 2017

Second Australian Atlas of Healthcare Variation

The Second Australian Atlas of Healthcare Variation shows variation in the use of specific types of health care across more than 300 local areas nationally, with a specific chapter on women's health.

Types of care examined include hysterectomy, cataract surgery, knee replacement and potentially preventable hospitalisations for selected conditions, including diabetes complications.

The Atlas has been jointly developed by the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care with analyses completed by the AIHW.

Media release: Second Atlas highlights opportunities for healthcare improvement.

View the Atlas: Second Australian Atlas of Healthcare Variation.

Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Evaluating Indigenous programs: a toolkit for change

The federal government recently announced it will allocate $10 million a year over 4 years to strengthen the evaluation of Indigenous programs. However, given that the average cost of an evaluation is $382,000, the extra $10 million a year for Indigenous program evaluations will not go far. To make the most of this additional funding the government must change the way it evaluates and monitors programs. Although formal evaluations for large government programs are important, evaluation need not involve outside contractors. Government must adopt a learning and developmental approach that embeds evaluation into a program's design as part of a continuous quality improvement process.

It is not enough just to evaluate, government must actually use the findings from evaluations to improve service delivery. Unfortunately, many government agencies ignore evaluations when making funding decisions or implementing new programs.

Analysis of 49 Indigenous program evaluation reports, found only 3 used rigorous methodology. Overall, the evaluations were characterised by a lack of data and the absence of a control group, as well as an overreliance on anecdotal evidence.

Adopting a co-accountability approach to evaluation will ensure that both the government agency funding the program and the program provider delivering the program are held accountable for results. An overarching evaluation framework could assist with the different levels of outcomes expected over the life of the program and the various indicators needed to measure whether the program is meeting its objectives. Feedback loops and a process to escalate any concerns will help to ensure government and program providers keep each other honest and lessons are learnt.

Evaluating Indigenous programs: a toolkit for change.

Monday, 5 June 2017

4 new AIHW Disability in Australia publications

In 2015-16, an estimated 332,000 people used disability support services under the National Disability Agreement (NDA), including around 3,500 who transitioned to the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) during the year.

* The average age of service users was 35, and around three-quarters (72%) were aged under 50.
* 43% of service users had an intellectual or learning disability, 42% had a physical or diverse disability, 29% had a psychiatric disability, and 18% had a speech or sensory difficulty.
* Almost one-third (30%) of service users aged 15 and over were not in the labour force. Of those in the labour force, two-thirds (67%) were unemployed.
* Two-thirds of service users had an informal carer, most often their mother (73%). Around one in eight (12%) service users had an informal carer who was aged 65 and over.

Download report: Disability support services: services provided under the National Disability Agreement 2015-16

The main report is accompanied by three fact sheets:

Disability in Australia: changes over time in inclusion and participation in community living.

Disability in Australia: changes over time in inclusion and participation in employment.

Disability in Australia: changes over time in inclusion and participation in education.

Mental health in remote & rural communities

Australians living in very remote locations have access to mental health services at a fifth of the rate of city dwellers, according to new research by the Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS).The research paper, Mental health in remote and rural communities found that country residents risk exacerbated mental illness because of insufficient early intervention and prevention services.This report contributes new data on remote and rural mental health.

The report's key findings recommend actions to improve mental health outcomes of remote and rural Australians:

1. Stronger recognition in the Fifth National Mental Health Plan of the significant barriers and challenges, including the large geographic and travel distances, that are faced by those in remote and rural areas when seeking to access comprehensive mental health services, as well as consideration of how these can be overcome;

2. Implementation of innovative service models, including consideration of further use of RFDS infrastructure to deliver necessary, appropriate, and more comprehensive mental health and suicide prevention services, more often; and

3. Appropriate resourcing by all levels of governments, to provide more long-term funding certainty.

Friday, 2 June 2017

National Drug Strategy Household Survey (NDSHS) 2016-key findings [AIHW]

The National Drug Strategy Household Survey 2016 key findings shows that:

* The decline in the daily smoking rate slowed in 2016 but there were more Australians never taking up smoking.
* Fewer people exceeded the lifetime risk guidelines for alcohol use but no change in the proportion exceeding the single occasion risk guidelines.
* Overall illicit drug use remained stable but use of some drugs declined.
* Australians now perceive methamphetamines to be the drug of most concern to the community and was the drug most likely to be associated with a 'drug problem'.

Media release: Teenage smoking and drinking down, while drug use rises among older people.

Download web report: National Drug Strategy Household Survey (NDSHS) 2016 key findings.

Subscribe to posts