Monday, 20 November 2017

Spatial variation in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women's access to 4 types of maternal health services

This report presents the findings of a project which assessed Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women's access to hospitals with public birthing services and 3 other types of maternal health services across Australia, then investigated possible high-level associations between access, maternal risk factors and birth outcomes.
Access to services

The study examined the geographic access of Indigenous women of child-bearing age (15–44) to 4 types of on-the-ground maternal health services: hospitals with a public birthing unit; Indigenous-specific primary health-care services (ISPHCSs); Royal Flying Doctor Service clinics; and general practitioners (GPs). Using 1 hour drive time boundaries around these locations and population counts from the 2011 Census at a range of geographic levels (SA2, remoteness, jurisdiction), the study found:

* approximately one-fifth (25,600 or 21%) of Indigenous women of child-bearing age lived outside a 1 hour drive time from the nearest hospital with a public birthing unit
* nearly all (97%) Indigenous women of child-bearing age had access to at least 1 type of maternal health service within a 1 hour drive time. The lowest levels of access were for women in Very remote and Remote areas, where 84% and 93%, respectively, had access to at least 1 type of service.
* Indigenous women of child-bearing age in Major cities, Inner regional and Outer regional areas had more types of services available to them within a 1 hour drive time than did women in more remote areas. Thus, they had more choice in which service they use.

Association with area-level maternal risk factor and birth outcomes

Examining possible associations between geographic accessibility to services, maternal risk factors and birth outcomes at the Indigenous Region level, the study found that poorer access to:

* GPs was associated with higher rates of pre-term birth and low birthweight

* ISPHCSs with maternal/antenatal services was associated with higher rates of smoking and low birthweight
* hospitals with public birthing units was associated with higher rates of smoking, pre-term birth and low birthweight
* at least 1 service was associated with higher smoking rates and higher rates of pre-term delivery and low birthweight.



Download report: Spatial variation in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women's access to 4 types of maternal health services<https://www.aihw.gov.au/reports/indigenous-health-welfare-services/spatial-variation-4-types-maternal-health-services/contents/table-of-contents>

Thursday, 9 November 2017

Roadblocks in mental health care

Clinical factors stand in the way of better mental health care, according to new research led by Flinders. The research project led by Professor Eimear Muir-Cochrane, Chair of Nursing (Mental Health) at Flinders University, has found that despite best practice techniques being available to reduce or eliminate seclusion and restraint, national system-wide implementation is inconsistent.

The project, funded by the National Mental Health Commission, and conducted by the Australian College of Mental Health Nurses (ACMHN), reveals that clinical factors stand in the way of achieving a restraint-free environment in mental health care.

Read more at: https://indaily.com.au/news/local/2017/11/08/roadblocks-mental-health-care/

Greater support for mental health in the bush

THE rate of suicide is 66 per cent higher in rural Australia compared to major cities, with farmers twice as likely to take their own lives than the general population. Per capita rural Medicare expenditure on mental health care is 60 per cent of what it is in cities.

Member for Maranoa David Littleproud said distance was one barrier for those in the bush, which had now been removed.Mr Littleproud said a new telehealth initiative was available for people living in rural and remote areas, improving access to psychological services."I often hear travel times and the fear of others knowing you're receiving help stops people from putting up their hand for assistance - so that's why we've introduced this new service to improve mental health access,” he said.

See more at: https://www.warwickdailynews.com.au/news/greater-support-for-mental-health-in-the-bush/3260006/

Thursday, 26 October 2017

Trends in injury deaths, Australia 1999-00 to 2011-12 [AIHW]

Trends in injury deaths, Australia 1999-00 to 2011-12



This report focuses on trends in deaths due to injury and poisoning that occurred over the period 1999-00 to 2011-12.

The age-standardised rate of injury deaths decreased from 55.4 to 47.2 deaths per 100,000 between 1999-00 and 2004-05 and changed little after that. Rates of injury deaths involving transport injury and homicide declined from 1999-00 to 2009-10, while rates for most other external cause groups fluctuated over this period. Rates for suicide deaths declined from 1999-00 until 2004-05 and remained relatively steady thereafter.

Rates for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people were generally at least twice as high as rates for non-Indigenous Australians over the period from 2001-02 to 2011-12.

Download report: Trends in injury deaths, Australia 1999-00 to 2011-12<https://www.aihw.gov.au/reports/injury/trends-in-injury-deaths-australia-1999-00-to-2011/contents/table-of-contents>

Trends in hospitalisations due to falls by older people [AIHW]

Trends in hospitalisations due to falls by older people, Australia 2002-03 to 2012-13

This report presents trends in fall related hospital care for people aged 65 and older from 2002-03 to 2012-13. There was a decrease in the rate of hip fractures due to falls (-2% per year) between 2002-03 and 2012-13. In contrast, falls resulting in head injuries increased at a particularly high rate (7% per year).



Download report: Trends in hospitalisations due to falls by older people, Australia 2002-03 to 2012-13<https://www.aihw.gov.au/reports/injury/hospitalisations-due-to-falls-older-people-2012-13/contents/table-of-contents>

Tuesday, 24 October 2017

Australian health expenditure-demographics and diseases [AIHW]

In 2012-13, hospital admitted patient expenditure was estimated at $45.0 billion, and accounted for almost one third (31%) of total health expenditure. Expenditure for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people was estimated at $2.1 billion. Expenditure was highest in older age groups, but grew for all age groups from 2004-05 to 2012-13 (45.5%). Cardiovascular diseases were the largest disease contributor at $5.0 billion (11.1%), followed by injuries at $4.1 billion (9.0%).

Download report: Australian health expenditure-demographics and diseases: hospital admitted patient expenditure 2004-05 to 2012-13<https://www.aihw.gov.au/reports/health-welfare-expenditure/australian-health-expenditure-demographics-disease/contents/table-of-contents>

Friday, 20 October 2017

5 new AIHW Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Performance Framework 2017 reports

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare has released 5 new Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Performance Framework 2017 reports today which can be accessed by clicking below.

These reports give the latest information on how Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in each state are faring according to various measures of health status and outcomes, determinants of health, and health system performance.
Indicators are based on the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Performance Framework.
The reports highlight the main areas of improvement, and continuing concern.


Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Performance Framework 2017 report: New South Wales<https://www.aihw.gov.au/reports/indigenous-health-welfare/health-performance-framework-2017-nsw/contents/table-of-contents>

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Performance Framework 2017 report: Queensland<https://www.aihw.gov.au/reports/indigenous-health-welfare/health-performance-framework-2017-qld/contents/table-of-contents>

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Performance Framework 2017 report: South Australia<https://www.aihw.gov.au/reports/indigenous-health-welfare/health-performance-framework-2017-sa/contents/table-of-contents>

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Performance Framework 2017 report: Victoria<https://www.aihw.gov.au/reports/the-health-welfare-of-australia-s-aboriginal-torres-strait-islander-peoples/health-performance-framework-2017-sa/contents/table-of-contents>

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Performance Framework 2017 report: Western Australia<https://www.aihw.gov.au/reports/indigenous-health-welfare/health-performance-framework-2017-wa/contents/table-of-contents>


All reports are available to purchase hard copy, AIHW catalogue numbers at links above.

Monday, 16 October 2017

National Strategic Framework for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples’ Mental Health and Social and Emotional Wellbeing 2017-2023

The Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet have launched the new National strategic framework for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people's mental health and social and emotional wellbeing 2017-2023. The framework sets out a comprehensive and culturally appropriate stepped care model that is applicable to both Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander specific and mainstream health services. It will help guide and support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander mental health policy and practice over the next 5 years, and be an important resource for policy makers, advocates, service providers, clients, consumers and researchers.

The framework is designed to complement the Fifth national mental health and suicide prevention plan and contribute to the vision of the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health plan 2012-2023.

The framework was developed under the auspices of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Advisory Group, co-chaired by Professor Pat Dudgeon and Professor Tom Calma AO.

National Strategic Framework for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples' Mental Health and Social and Emotional Wellbeing 2017-2023.

"Head to Health": Australia’s new digital mental health gateway

Australia's new digital mental health gateway, Head to Health, is now live. Head to Health connects people to online and phone mental health services appropriate for their individual needs.

Head to Health will help people to take control of their mental health, at a time and place convenient to them, complementing or in place of face-to-face services. It supports people seeking help - either for themselves or someone they care about.

Head to Health is not only helpful when seeking support for a mental health condition, it also provides information about staying mentally well for every Australian.

Services and resources listed on Head to Health are delivered by Australia's mental health service providers including the Butterfly Foundation, CanTeen, beyondblue and Kids Helpline. They include free or low-cost apps, online support communities, online courses, and phone services that are private and secure.

Head to Health was developed in collaboration with the community, the mental health sector and the Department of Health.

Visit Head to Health for more information.

Building a digital mental health gateway was a key part of the Government's response to the National Mental Health Commission's Contributing Lives, Thriving Communities – National Review of Mental Health Programmes and Services.

Friday, 13 October 2017

New report and web report: Mental Health Services [AIHW]

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare has released a report and web report:

Mental health services-in brief report and Mental Health Services in Australia web report

Mental health services: in brief 2017 provides an overview of data about the national response of the health and welfare system to the mental health care needs of Australians.

Sections that are being updated in the online Mental Health Services Australia pages are
* Mental health services provided by general practitioners
* Mental health service provided in emergency departments
* Community mental health care
* Residential mental health care
* Overnight admitted mental health care
* Same day admitted mental health care
* Restrictive practices

Media release: Access to mental health services through Medicare on the rise with almost 1 in 10 Australians accessing government-subsidised services.

Download report: Mental health services-in brief

Download web report: Mental Health Services in Australia.

Wednesday, 11 October 2017

50 years since citizenship: successes and challenges in Indigenous health

This year, Australia celebrates 50 years since the 1967 referendum, when the nation voted to amend the constitution to allow the federal government to create laws for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and include them in the census. The latest issue of Public Health Research & Practice reflects on some of the changes that have occurred since the referendum, particularly with respect to progress in improving Indigenous health outcomes.

Articles in this issue include an interview with the Indigenous Health Minister, Ken Wyatt, about the policy and politics of improving Indigenous health; a perspective on the Indigenous smoking epidemic and what stage it is at; an article on research priorities in Indigenous cancer and an 'In practice' article describing a NSW Health program established to strengthen the Aboriginal public health workforce.

Non-themed papers look at trends in fall-related ambulance use and hospitalisation among older adults; an overview of child injury surveillance capabilities in NSW; and the validity of self-reported medication use compared with the gold standard, pharmaceutical claims data.

Link to full issue

Friday, 6 October 2017

Health expenditure Australia 2015-16 [AIHW]

Health expenditure Australia 2015-16 is available as either dynamic data or a PDF report.

* Total spending on health in Australia was $170.4 billion in 2015-16, $6.0 billion (3.6%) higher in real terms than in 2014-15. This was the 4th consecutive year that growth was below the 10 year average of 4.7%.

* Despite the low growth, the share of the economy (GDP) represented by health (10.3%) continued to grow, due to slower real GDP growth (2.7%).

Media release: Governments chipping in more for health, as individual Australians pay less.

Download report: Health expenditure Australia 2015-16.

Wednesday, 4 October 2017

Health of Australia's males and females [AIHW]

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare has released two new web reports.

Health of Australia's males and females

* This release updates the AIHW's existing web report on male health and creates a new report focused on female health.
* The reports contain data on chronic conditions, risk factors and comorbidities, including some information on sex-specific health issues (for example, maternal health).

Download report: The health of Australia's females.

Download report: The health of Australia's males.

Wednesday, 27 September 2017

Reporting the Health and Development of Children in Rural and Remote Australia

In 2017, Royal Far West, a not-for-profit organisation providing leadership in rural and remote children's health and wellbeing, commissioned the Centre for Community Child Health to undertake a review of the health and development and wellbeing of children in rural and remote Australia.

Published in September 2017, Reporting the Health and Development of Children in Rural and Remote Australia:

* profiled the population characteristics of children in rural and remote Australia
* identified the current context and the developmental health needs, met and unmet, of vulnerable children and families in rural and remote Australia; and
* provided an evidence-based overview of what is causing the status quo, and what is most effective in addressing these issues.

The Report emphasised the developmental, behavioural and mental health status/needs of children aged 0-12 years of age, and existing gaps in the provision of appropriate services that help address developmental needs and support children, and their families, to reach their potential.

The review presented a range of key findings covering:

* the distribution of children by Indigenous status and remoteness, across each jurisdiction
* the disparities between Indigenous and non-Indigenous children
* the profile of children residing in rural and remote areas in each of the identified jurisdictions
* main service gaps for children and families in remote and rural Australia
* what the evidence says about ways of improving health and development outcomes for children in rural and remote Australia
* strategies shown to be effective in improving access and outcomes for children
* knowledge gaps and opportunities to improve services and outcomes.

Download the full report: Reporting the Health and Development of Children in Rural and Remote Australia

Read the summary report: The Invisible Children: The state of country children's health and development in Australia

Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Pathways to permanent residential aged care in Australia [AIHW]



Some 61,300 people first entered permanent residential aged care (PRAC) in 2013-14. While they used over 1,000 different combinations of other aged care in the preceding years, the most common pathway (used by 1 in 4 people) was through Home and Community Care (HACC). Many pathways showed a similar pattern of moving 'up' to progressively higher levels of support.

Download report: Pathways to permanent residential aged care in Australia: a Pathways in Aged Care (PiAC) analysis of people's aged care program use before first entry to permanent residential aged care in 2013-14.

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Survey of Health Care, Australia, 2016 [AIHW - ABS]

4343.0 Survey of Health Care, Australia, 2016

The publication presents national-level results from the Survey of Health Care 2016 (Survey). The Survey explored experiences of coordination and continuity of care by people aged 45 and over who had at least one GP visit in the 12 months prior to selection of the survey sample. It covers health status, access and appropriateness of care, plus demographic information for reporting on equity measures.

The Survey was funded by the AIHW and conducted by the ABS. It was designed to provide robust samples for each of the 31 Primary Health Network (PHN) areas and new information for the primary care sector to improve patients' experiences and outcomes. While the forthcoming publication presents national-level results, in 2018 the AIHW will release a series of publications with results by PHN area.

Media release: Over 45s report positive experiences with Australia's health care system.

Download publication: 4343.0 - Survey of Health Care, Australia, 2016.

Friday, 15 September 2017

Stroke: No Postcode Untouched

This report from the Stroke Foundation demonstrates the cities and towns where stroke is having its biggest impact, where the need for stroke survivor support is most urgent and where the future stroke hotspots are located. It contains federal electorate breakdowns of key information including the number of strokes, the number of stroke survivors living in the community and the leading risk factors for preventable stroke.

By looking at the No Postcode Untouched website you can see that the Electorates of Parkes and Calare have over 5800 people living with stroke. In 2017, 429 people in Calare and 421 in Parkes suffered a stroke.

Download the report: No Postcode Untouched: Stroke in Australia 2017.

Thursday, 7 September 2017

New websites connect rural people to mental health support

Each year, 1 in 5 of us will experience a mental health problem. If you live in the city, you are twice as likely to see a psychologist than if you live in a rural area of NSW.

To address this the Centre for Rural and Remote Mental Health (CRRMH) and its flagship progran the Rural Adversity Mental Health Program(RAMHP) have launched new websites ensuring rural communities know when, where and how to find mental health support when they need it.

Director of the CRRMH Professor David Perkins said the new websites were developed to make it easy for anyone to find evidence-based information and research, useful resources, and contact details for Rural Adversity Mental Health Coordinators located across NSW.

The visually appealing and easy to navigate websites also include links to research papers, publications and studies on topics such as rural suicide prevention and Aboriginal health and wellbeing.

Centre for Rural & Remote Health website.

Rural Adversity Mental Health Program website.

Wednesday, 6 September 2017

The quality of Australian Indigenous primary health care research focusing on social and emotional wellbeing: a systematic review

This review looks at how to address the challenge of conducting Indigenous-focused primary health care research that is scientifically robust, culturally appropriate and produces community-level outcomes.

Key points:

* More examples are needed of Indigenous-focused health research that are scientifically robust and acceptable to thecommunity
* A range of research designs is used depending on the collaboration, community perspectives and the study aim
* Participatory action research can inform localised interventions and research designs, including randomised designs
* Processes that are culturally sensitive may improve community acceptance. These include two-way learning,participatory, social–ecological and phenomenological approaches
* Research should produce beneficial community-level outcomes

Link to the review.

Monday, 28 August 2017

Planning and evaluating palliative care services in NSW.

A new report by the NSW Auditor-General, Planning and evaluating palliative care services in NSW has found that NSW Health's approach to planning and evaluating palliative care is not effectively coordinated. There is no overall policy framework for palliative and end-of-life care, nor is there comprehensive monitoring and reporting on services and outcomes.

NSW Health has a limited understanding of the quantity and quality of palliative care services across the state, which reduces its ability to plan for future demand and the workforce needed to deliver it. At the district level, planning is sometimes ad hoc and accountability for performance is unclear.

The capacity of LHDs to use accurate and complete data to plan and deliver services is hindered by multiple disjointed information systems and manual data collections. Further, a data collection on patient outcomes, for benchmarking and quality improvement, is not used universally. This limits the ability of districts to plan, benchmark and improve services based on outcomes data.

NSW Health's engagement with stakeholders is not systematic. The lack of an overall stakeholder engagement strategy puts at risk the sustainability and value of stakeholder input in planning and limits transparency.

Over the last 2 years, NSW Health has taken steps to improve its planning and support for districts. The Agency for Clinical Innovation has produced an online resource which will assist LHDs in constructing their own, localised models of care. eHealth, which coordinates information communication technology for the state's healthcare, aims to invest in integrating and improving information systems. These initiatives should help to address many of the issues now inhibiting integrated service delivery, reporting on activity and outcomes, and planning for the future.

Full report

Thursday, 24 August 2017

Western NSW Primary Health Network shows what works in delivering effective Aboriginal health services

The AHHA has released a Deeble Institute Evidence Brief on What works in partnering to deliver effective Aboriginal health services: the Western New South Wales Primary Health Network experience.

This Evidence Brief has been written because early evidence is suggesting that the partnership between the Western New South Wales (NSW) Primary Health Network (PHN) and Aboriginal primary healthcare services in the Western NSW PHN region is proving effective in terms of increased trust and supporting a stronger network of services for local Aboriginal communities. In particular, the structure and governance of services in this PHN region are unique in Australia, and could possibly provide lessons for other PHNs and Aboriginal health programs generally.

The brief outlines and discusses the Western NSW PHN arrangements and how they are supporting and building a stronger platform for the delivery of Aboriginal primary healthcare services in this region.'Western New South Wales Primary Health Network (WNSW PHN) has had some exciting and inspiring success in delivering effective primary health services to Aboriginal people', says Alison Verhoeven, Chief Executive of the Australian Healthcare and Hospitals Association (AHHA).

In particular, the number of Aboriginal people using integrated care services for chronic conditions more than doubled in the space of only 4 months.

The Evidence Brief is available at: https://ahha.asn.au/publication/evidence-briefs/evidence-brief-15-what-works-partnering-deliver-effective-aboriginal

Lighthouse project aims to improve cardiac outcomes for Aboriginal people

18 hospitals from around Australia have signed up to the Lighthouse Hospital Project aimed at improving the hospital treatment of coronary heart disease among Indigenous Australians. Lighthouse is operated and managed by the Heart Foundation and the Australian Healthcare and Hospitals Association (AHHA). It is funded by the Australian Government.

The 18 hospitals cover almost one-half of all cardiac admissions in Australia for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

Heart Foundation National CEO Adjunct Professor John Kelly said closing the gap in cardiovascular disease between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians was a key Heart Foundation priority, and it was highly appropriate that the announcement coincided with National Sorry Day.

'Cardiac care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples is serious business. Australia's First Peoples are more likely to have heart attacks than non-Indigenous Australians, and more likely to have early heart disease onset coupled with other health problems, frequent hospital admissions and premature death. Deaths happen at almost twice the rate for non-Indigenous Australians, yet Indigenous Australians appear to have fewer tests and treatments while in hospital, and discharge from hospital against medical advice is five times as high', Professor Kelly said

More at: https://ahha.asn.au/news/18-hospitals-sign-close-gap-aboriginal-and-torres-strait-islander-heart-health

Tuesday, 22 August 2017

Anguish of families touched by suicide revealed in inquiry submissions

The anguish of two families touched by suicide has been laid bare in submissions to an inquiry into the management of health delivery in New South Wales.

The death of 18-year-old Ahlia Raftery in Newcastle's Mater Mental Health Unit in 2015 prompted scathing findings by deputy state coroner Derek Lee. He called for better nurse-to-patient ratios and wearable technology to prove that a patient is still alive.

Read more at: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-08-21/anguish-of-families-touched-by-suicide-revealed-in-submissions/8826428

Healing power of art therapy in the country

Moving to a new place is always difficult, especially if you're leaving something behind. But moving to a small regional town in the country, alone — with little support and with a disability is a particular challenge. Ten years ago when legally blind artist, art therapist and social activist Jamahl Pollard moved to Berri in South Australia's Riverland, he faced discrimination because he was different.

But Jamahl has channelled his feelings of marginalisation into teaching mentally ill patients at the local hospital, the healing power of art. See link at: http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/lifematters/art-therapy-for-mentally-ill-in-the-country/8829824 and download audio for more info on this story.

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

GEN-Aged care data [AIHW Website]

A new Australian Institute of Health and Welfare website, GEN, has been launched today by The Hon Ken Wyatt AM, MP at Parliament House, Canberra.

GEN is a comprehensive "one-stop shop" for data and information about aged care services in Australia. It reports on capacity and activity in the aged care system focusing on the people, their care assessments and the services they use.

GEN is designed to cater for all levels of users, from students looking for information for assignments, right through to data modellers and actuaries.

Overview of GEN

Learn how to use the GEN website

Wednesday, 2 August 2017

Health care access, mental health, and preventative health: health priority survey findings for people in the bush (RFDS)

Health care access, mental health, and preventative health: health priority survey findings for people in the bush. This collaborative project with National Farmers' Federation and the Country Women's Association of Australia has been completed. A survey of over 450 country people drawn from every state and territory, saw one-third of responses (32.5%) name doctor and medical specialist access as their key priority.

7 million Australians live in remote and rural Australia. On average, these 7 million Australians have poorer health outcomes and live shorter lives than city residents. For example, the premature death rate is 1.6 times higher in remote Australia than in city areas. The percentage of people in remote areas with arthritis, asthma, deafness, diabetes, cancer, and cardiovascular disease is higher than in cities. The health behaviours of people in country areas are less conducive to good health than people in cities, with higher rates of smoking, obesity, and alcohol misuse in remote areas than in cities.

While there is ample evidence on the health access and outcome disparity between city and country Australia, there is little information about how country people themselves see these disparities. In response, the Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS) joined with the National Farmers' Federation (NFF) to assess the health needs of remote and rural Australians and to give voice to country Australians.

The key issues identified by the survey respondents represent the areas in which government policy efforts should be directed. The five most important issues identified by respondents overall were access to medical services; mental health; drugs and alcohol; cancer; and cardiovascular health. The areas of health that respondents identified money should be spent on included: access to medical services; mental health; health promotion and prevention activities; cancer; aged care; and travel and accommodation support for people needing to access health care outside of their community. Many of these areas are already the focus of government policy, but their inclusion in the findings of the survey suggest more effort and resources are required to address them.

Health care access, mental health, and preventative health - survey report.

Tuesday, 1 August 2017

Promoting social and emotional development and wellbeing of infants in pregnancy and the first year of life

During its 2012-15 term, the NHMRC's former Prevention and Community Health Committee (PCHC) identified mental health as a key project area, with a particular focus on the effectiveness of parenting practices and their role in promoting social and emotional health and wellbeing in children and later on as adults. A new report has just been issued and includes a Plain Language Summary that summarises the findings of 51 systematic literature reviews and analyses the types of interventions aimed at promoting infants' and children's social and emotional wellbeing. The report is aimed at governments and other policy makers, researchers and service providers who work with parents of infants.

National Health and Medical Research Council. (2017). NHMRC Report on the Evidence: Promoting social and emotional development and wellbeing of infants in pregnancy and the first year of life.

Wednesday, 26 July 2017

Tackling Indigenous Smoking Program: Evaluation report

Indigenous Health Minister Ken Wyatt AM said the findings from a new report on the preliminary evaluation of the Tackling Indigenous Smoking program were encouraging.

"The report found the program is operating effectively, using proven approaches to change smoking behaviours, and delivering evidence based local tobacco health promotion activities. I am pleased the report recommends it continues," Minister Wyatt said.

"Smoking is the most preventable cause of disease and early death among Aboriginal people and accounts for almost one-quarter of the difference in average health outcomes between indigenous and non-indigenous Australians.

"The program provides grants in 37 urban, rural, regional and remote areas to assist local communities to develop localised anti-smoking campaigns and offer intervention training for frontline community and health workers."

The preliminary report is available from : http://health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/Content/indigenous-tis-target

Press release

Tackling Indigenous Smoking Home Page

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.

Indigenous primary health care reports

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare has released two new reports:

National Key Performance Indicators for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander primary health care

This 4th national report on the national Key Performance Indicators (nKPIs) data collection is based on data from more than 240 primary health care organisations that received funding from the Australian Government Department of Health to provide services primarily to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

Information is presented for 22 'process-of-care' and 'health outcome' indicators for June 2016, which focus on maternal and child health, preventative health, and chronic disease management. The report shows continuous improvements for the majority of indicators.

Download report: National Key Performance Indicators for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander primary health care.



Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health organisations: Online Services Report-key results 2015-16

This is the 8th national report on organisations funded by the Australian Government to provide health services to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. In 2015-16:

* 204 organisations provided primary health-care services to around 461,500 clients through 5.4 million client contacts and 3.9 million episodes of care.
* 216 counsellors from 93 organisations provided social and emotional wellbeing services to around 18,900 clients through 88,900 client contacts.
* 80 organisations provided substance-use services to around 32,700 clients through 170,400 episodes of care.

Download report: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health organisations: Online Services Report-key results 2015-16.

Thursday, 1 June 2017

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health performance framework 2017 data visualisation tool

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Performance Framework 2017 includes a suite of products that give the latest information on how Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in Australia are faring according to a range of 68 performance measures.

To support the AHMAC/PM&C report, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Performance Framework 2017, the AIHW is releasing:

* A dynamic data visualisation display that provides a report-card overview of each performance measure, and includes options for displaying detailed, customisable charts
* Online data tables covering a wide range of data for each measure.

Download data visualisation tool: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health performance framework 2017.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Performance Framework 2017 Report

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Performance Framework (HPF) monitors progress in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health outcomes, health system performance and the broader determinants of health. Beginning in 2006, this is the 6th report in this series. The health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples is improving for a number of measures, although there remain many areas where further concerted effort will be needed to achieve improvements in health outcomes.

The supplementary detailed statistical analysis (dynamic data displays with interactive charts and online tables), is available on the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare website.

Previous HPF reports and further background information can be accessed from the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Performance Framework page on the Department of Health website.

Previous AIHW detailed analyses can be accessed at the AIHW website.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Performance Framework 2017 Report.

Read the HTML version of this report.;

Indigenous eye health measures 2016

Indigenous eye health measures 2016 is the first national report on 22 newly developed Indigenous eye health measures. The measures cover the prevalence of eye health conditions, diagnosis and treatment services for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians, the eye health workforce and outreach services. Subject to data availability, the report examines differences between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians, as well as differences by factors such as age, sex, remoteness, jurisdiction and Primary Health Network.

Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Weight loss surgery in Australia 2014-15: Australian hospital statistics [AIHW]

Weight loss surgery in Australia 2014-15: Australian hospital statistics is a new report in AIHW's series of summary reports describing the characteristics of hospitals and hospital services in Australia.

* In 2014-15, there were about 22,700 hospital separations involving one or more weight loss surgery procedures. 7 in 8 of these separations occurred in private hospitals.

* Around 18,000 of weight loss surgery separations, or 79%, were for female patients.

* From 2005-06 to 2014-15, the total number of weight loss surgery separations more than doubled, from about 9,300 to 22,700.

Media release: More Australians turning to weight loss surgery

Download report: Weight loss surgery in Australia 2014-15: Australian hospital statistics

Thursday, 25 May 2017

National Strategic Framework for Chronic Conditions

The National Strategic Framework for Chronic Conditions (the Framework) is the overarching policy document for chronic conditions that sets the directions and outcomes to achieve its Vision that "all Australians live healthier lives through effective prevention and management of chronic conditions."

The Framework provides guidance for the development and implementation of policies, strategies, actions and services to reduce the impact of chronic conditions in Australia. It supersedes the National Chronic Disease Strategy 2005 and associated National Service Improvement Frameworks.

The Framework moves away from a disease-specific approach and provides national direction applicable to a broad range of chronic conditions by recognising that there are often similar underlying principles for the prevention and management of many chronic conditions. The Framework will better cater for shared health determinants, risk factors and multimorbidities across a broad range of chronic conditions

PDF version: PDF version: National Strategic Framework for Chronic Conditions - PDF 4.1 MB

Word version: National Strategic Framework for Chronic Conditions - Word 2.3

Wednesday, 17 May 2017

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

In 2015-16, there were about 10.6 million separations in Australia's public and private hospitals-about 59% occurred in public hospitals. There were 30 million days of patient care reported for admitted patients-20.2 million in public hospitals and 9.7 million in private hospitals.

Between 2011-12 and 2015-16:

* the number of separations rose by 3.5% on average each year.

* the number of public patient separations rose by an average of 2.9% each year, compared with 5.5% per year for separations paid for by private health insurance.

* the median waiting time for elective surgery for public patients in a public hospital was 42 days, while it was 20 days for patients who used private health insurance to fund all or part of their admission.

Media release: Hospital admissions growing steadily, more Australians going private in hospitals.

Download report: Admitted patient care 2015-16: Australian hospital statistics

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

League legends take mental fitness to the country

In association with the Act-Belong-Commit, Rugby League legends Wayne Wigham and Percy Knight will be taking their message about mental health to country NSW.

When Rugby League great Wayne Wigham opened up publicly about his experience with depression, he made his message clear - mental illness can affect anyone even if it doesn’t show it on the surface.After seven years working in the Black Dog Institute Education Team, he is gearing up to take his message to communities and schools in country NSW in association with the Act-Belong-Commit initiative.

See more at: https://www.blackdoginstitute.org.au/news/news-detail/2017/05/12/league-legends-take-mental-fitness-to-the-country

Friday, 12 May 2017

Expanding medicare-supported treatment for eating disorder patients

People with eating disorders may soon have access to more than 10 Medicare supported psychological treatment sessions each year, thanks to a recommendation made by Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt.The minister said the system needed to do more to respond to complex mental illnesses such as anorexia which has the highest associated rate of suicide of any mental illness. Mr Hunt recommended the Medicare review committee look at ways to extend the support to those dealing with the complex mental health disorders.

University of Canberra clinical psychologist Dr Vivienne Lewis, an eating disorder specialist, said even though prevalence was high in adolescents these conditions should not overlooked as byproduct of tumultuous teen years.

See more at: http://www.smh.com.au/act-news/expanding-medicaresupported-treatment-for-eating-disorder-patients-20170507-gvzz0r.html

Mental health funding in the 2017 budget is too little, unfair and lacks a coherent strategy

This week’s federal budget allocated A$115 million in new funding over four years. This is one of the smallest investments in the sector in recent years.For instance, the Council of Australian Governments (CoAG) added more than $5.5 billion to mental health spending in 2006. The 2011-12 federal budget provided $2.2 billion in new funding.


This compounds a situation in which, in 2014-15, mental health received around 5.25% of the overall health budget while representing 12% of the total burden of disease. There is no reason those figures should exactly match, but the gap is large and revealing.


See more at: https://theconversation.com/mental-health-funding-in-the-2017-budget-is-too-little-unfair-and-lacks-a-coherent-strategy-77470

Monday, 8 May 2017

Aboriginal identification in hospitals: quality improvement program

The Aboriginal identification in hospitals: quality improvement program report aims to improve the cultural competence of staff in NSW hospital Emergency Departments (EDs), improve the identification of Aboriginality in NSW hospital EDs, and reduce the proportion of Aborigonal patients who have an incomplete emergency attendance.

Aboriginal health in Aboriginal hands : community-controlled comprehensive primary health care

Comprehensive primary health care (PHC)—which focuses on the whole patient, not simply a disease state—has been the global 'gold standard' for addressing community health problems since the 1970s, including in Australia. Ideals are rarely put to the test, however.

In 2010 the National Health and Medical Research Centre (NH&MRC) funded the Southgate Institute for Health, Society and Equity at Flinders University to investigate how well community health services in South Australia are conforming to the principles of comprehensive PHC and the reasons for their success or otherwise.

6 community health services were selected for intensive study over several years: 5 in South Australia and 1 in Alice Springs in the Northern Territory. Of these 6, the Central Australian Aboriginal Congress ('Congress') in Alice Springs, best embodied the principles of comprehensive PHC—by a long way.

To read more go to the full report : Aboriginal health in Aboriginal hands : community-controlled comprehensive primary health care.

Thursday, 27 April 2017

Clinical governance for Primary Health Networks

Responding to the needs of people who are most at risk of poor health outcomes is a priority for governments and communities across Australia. While definitions vary, there is widespread agreement in the literature that the commissioning of health services is more than traditional planning, funding and procurement. It is the process for deciding how to use the total health resources available in order to improve outcomes in the most efficient, effective, equitable and sustainable way.

This issues brief from the Deeble Institute for Health Policy Research, sets out the rationale for developing and implementing a clinical governance framework for Primary Health Networks (PHNs) in commissioning the provision of primary health services that are safe and effective. It provides principles that inform clinical governance policy including recommendations on how clinical governance should be supported in commissioning undertaken by PHNs for contract development, management, auditing and compliance. PHNs also have a role in influencing the uptake of quality improvement activities in general practice including the interface between primary care and community services.

The critical areas in ensuring clinical governance are:

* Consumers having opportunities to manage their own health and also participate in innovation and value creation through co-design processes.
* Clinician-led workforce that enables PHNs to make informed decisions about commissioning health services with providers who have the appropriate capacity and expertise to deliver safe care.
* Delivery of safe quality care through identifying areas for practice improvement and those practices that may put consumers at risk of harm,and making recommendations to prevent or control those risks.
* Clinical risk management to ensure that service providers have the capacity to meet legislative requirements and national and jurisdictional standards when designing best practice for their service.

http://apo.org.au/files/Resource/210417_issues_brief_no_22-_clinical_governance_for_phns.pdf

Thursday, 20 April 2017

Alcohol and other drug treatment services in Australia, 2015-16: key findings [AIHW]

In 2015-16, around 796 alcohol and other drug treatment services provided just over 206,000 treatment episodes to an estimated 133,000 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 increase over the last 10 years, from 12% of treatment episodes in 2006-07 to 23% in 2015-16.
* The median age of clients in AOD treatment services is increasing, 33 years in 2015-16, up from 31 in 2006-07.

Download web report: Alcohol and other drug treatment services in Australia, 2015-16: key findings

Infographic: Alcohol & Other Drug Treatment Services 2015-16

Wednesday, 19 April 2017

5 new AIHW Injuries publications

Hospitalised assault injuries among women and girls fact sheet

Key findings:
* Rates of assault among women were highest for those aged between 15-19 and 50-54.
* Over half (59%) of all these women were assaulted by bodily force, and for assaults by bodily force and involving sharp and blunt objects, the majority of injuries were to the head and neck (63%).
* Where information about the perpetrator was available, a spouse or domestic partner was the most commonly reported perpetrator (in 59% of cases).

Media release: Domestic violence leading cause of hospitalised assault among girls and women


Dog-related injuries fact sheet

Firearm injuries and deaths fact sheet

DIY injuries fact sheet

Serious unintentional injury involving a railway train or tram, Australia, 2009-10 to 2013-14 report

Thursday, 13 April 2017

Impact of overweight and obesity as a risk factor for chronic conditions [AIHW]

Impact of overweight and obesity as a risk factor for chronic conditions updates and extends estimates of the burden due to overweight and obesity reported in the Australian Burden of Disease Study 2011 to include burden in people aged under 25, revised diseases linked to overweight and obesity based on the latest evidence, and estimates by socioeconomic group.

* The report includes scenario modelling, undertaken to assess the potential impact on future health burden if overweight and obesity in the population continues to rise or is reduced.

* The enhanced analysis in the report shows that 7.0% of the total health burden in Australia in 2011 is due to overweight and obesity, and that this burden increased with increasing level of socioeconomic disadvantage.

Download report: Impact of overweight and obesity as a risk factor for chronic conditions

Media release: Small changes in our weight could significantly reduce health impact of obesity.

Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Early childhood the key to improving Indigenous health

A major study into the health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children has found programs and policies to promote healthy weight should target children as young as three.

Lead researcher Katie Thurber from the Australian National University said the majority of Indigenous children in the national study had a healthy Body Mass Index, but around 40% were classified as overweight or obese by the time they reached 9 years of age.

Deeble issues brief on overweight and obesity among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children

Wednesday, 29 March 2017

Incidence of insulin-treated diabetes in Australia, 2015 [AIHW]

This fact sheet by the Australian Institute of Health & Welfare provides the latest available national data on new cases of insulin-treated diabetes in Australia.

It shows that in 2015 there were 28,775 people who began using insulin to treat their diabetes in Australia-63% had type 2 diabetes, 26% had gestational diabetes, 9% had type 1 diabetes and 2% had other forms of diabetes or their diabetes status was unknown.

The fact sheet is accompanied by a dynamic data display, which provides data on insulin-treated diabetes by age at first insulin use, Indigenous status, remoteness, SEIFA and state/territory.

Download report: Incidence of insulin-treated diabetes in Australia, 2015


Download dynamic data display: Incidence of insulin-treated diabetes in Australia dynamic data display

Monday, 6 March 2017

Oral health of Australian children: the National Child Oral Health Study 2012–14

Despite some improvement, child oral health has remained a significant population health issue in Australia in the 21st Century. The evidence described in this report has pointed to substantial social patterning of oral health status, dental service use and dental and general health behaviours among Australian children. The identification of the numerous factors and the relation between them at an individual child, family, school and community level poses both difficulties and opportunities for programs to make improvements to and reduce social inequalities in child oral health.

Oral health of Australian children: the National Child Oral Health Study 2012–14.

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

National key performance indicators for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander primary health care: preliminary results from May 2015 [AIHW]

National key performance indicators for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander primary health care: preliminary results from May 2015 captures summary data from around 240 primary health care organisations that received funding from the Australian Government Department of Health to provide services primarily to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people as at May 2015.

It presents summary data for 21 indicators (14 process-of-care and 7 health outcome indicators) on maternal and child health, preventative health and chronic disease management. Complete results for May 2015 and June 2016 are due to be released in May 2017 in the National key performance indicators for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander primary health care: results from June 2016.

Download data report: National key performance indicators for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander primary health care: preliminary results for May 2015

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

The economic cost of dementia in Australia

Alzheimer's Australia commissioned NATSEM at the Institute for Governance and Policy Analysis at the University of Canberra to estimate the cost of dementia in Australia. The economic impact of dementia is a major concern nationally and internationally as the number of individuals with dementia continues to rise. Access Economics(2003) estimated the total cost of dementia to be $6.6 billion in 2002.

Economic cost of dementia in Australia 2016-2056 shows that the cost of dementia in Australia in 2016 is $14.25 billion, which equates to an average cost of $35,550 per person with dementia. Not only does this report update the Access Economics 2002 estimate to 2016, it also projects likely future costs of dementia over the next 40 years. In doing so, it provides an overview of dementia in Australia, including increases in the prevalence and incidence of dementia over the next 40 years, describes some of the social and economic characteristics of people with dementia, and identifies the impact of dementia on mortality and burden of disease.

The need for care and provision of care services is also reported on, including estimating the future need for both informal and formal carers in both the community and residential aged care sectors. The report models direct and indirect costs of dementia in 2016 out to 2056. The impact on costs of a 'hypothetical' intervention program that reduces the annual incidence of dementia by 5% is modelled. A second scenario simulates the impact of 'hypothetical' technological change in hospital care and its impact on costs.

9th Closing the Gap report

This is a report card on how we, as a nation, are meeting our responsibilities in improving outcomes for our First Australians. This report recognises changes are underway and successes are being achieved, however, progress overall nationally, is too slow.

The Closing the Gap targets address the areas of health, education and employment, and provide an important snapshot of where progress is being made and where further efforts are needed. We know we will not make the necessary gains across any of these areas if we don't work in partnership with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. It is only once we establish effective mechanisms for working together, for supporting decision-making at the community level, that we are likely to see the gains needed to meet the targets.

The importance of culture cannot be underestimated in working to close the gap. The connection to land, family and culture is fundamental to the wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures are the world's oldest continuous cultures—they have stood the test of time. We must continue to preserve and respect Indigenous cultures for this generation and the future and we must acknowledge the impact of past policies on our First Australians, and work to heal the wounds of the past.

We need to look at what the evidence tells us will work and, where needed, invest in better understanding the most effective solutions. Our ambitious reform agenda, with COAG and Indigenous leaders, will consider learnings over the last decade under Closing the Gap and where we need to change course to deliver sustainable change.

9th Closing the Gap Report.

Healthcare-associated Staphylococcus aureus bloodstream infections in 2015-16 [AIHW]

Healthcare-associated Staphylococcus aureus bloodstream infections in 2015-16 includes new data on rates of healthcare-associated Staphylococcus aureus bloodstream infections (Golden Staph) for Australian public hospitals in 2015-16. Major hospitals continue to record the highest rates of infections, which have been declining nationally over the past six years from 1.68 cases per 10,000 days of patient care in 2010-11 to 1.02 cases per 10,000 in 2015-16. Information is provided via Excel downloads and on reported hospitals results pages. A new interactive table allows users to see how rates in public hospitals compare over a six-year period.

Download report: Healthcare-associated Staphylococcus aureus bloodstream infections in 2015-16

Tuesday, 14 February 2017

NSW Emergency departments website

NSW Health has launched a new Real-Time Emergency Department website.

The purpose of this website is to inform members of the public about availability of emergency departments in major NSW hospitals. The website also allows to locate the nearest hospitals and to see a number of patients waiting in the Emergency Rooms.

http://www.emergencywait.health.nsw.gov.au/

Changing associations of selected social determinants with Aboriginal and torres Strait Island health & wellbeing, 2002 to 2012-13

Changing associations of selected social determinants with Aboriginal and torres Strait Island health & wellbeing, 2002 to 2012-13 by the Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research uses data from national health and social surveys of the Indigenous population, conducted between 2002 and 2012-13, to examine whether associations of some key social determinants with selected health and wellbeing outcomes changed over that time.

Consistently during the decade, employment status and housing tenure were significantly associated with a range of health and wellbeing outcomes for the Indigenous population.

As education levels have increased among the Indigenous population, the association of education with health and wellbeing has weakened. This suggests that at least some of the association of education with health and wellbeing is attributable to other characteristics of individuals or educational institutions not captured in our models, not just the outcome of the education process itself.

Improvements in some health and wellbeing outcomes in remote areas, despite declining employment over the decade, suggest that more detailed analysis is required to shed light on whether associations between the selected social determinants of health and wellbeing differ for Indigenous people living in remote and nonremote areas.

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