Profiles of disability Australia

In 2009, four million people in Australia reported having a disability (18.5%), according to new profiles released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS). The main conditions associated with disability were back problems (15.6%), arthritis (14.8%), hearing loss (6%), leg damage from injury/accident (3%), depression (3%) and asthma (3%). Most (87%) people with disability had specific restrictions, meaning they had limitations in one or more of the everyday core activity areas of self-care, mobility and communication or that they had a schooling or employment restriction. The remainder (13%) had disability that was non-restricting.

Other key findings: most young people (92% or 260,000) with disability aged 15-34 years used internet in last 12 months; almost half (46% or 132,000) of young people with disability aged 15-34 years contacted family and friends via the internet at least once a day; the prevalence of disability has decreased since 2003 from 20% to 18.5%; and an estimated 23,700 people in Australia, or around 1 in every 100,000 people, have Multiple Sclerosis.

Media release

Profiles of disability Australia 2009

Disability, ageing & carers Australia : Summary of findings

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