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Older Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People: A snapshot (cat. no. 4722.0.55.002)
This snapshot provides an overview of the health and social circumstances of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians aged 55 years and over. Topics covered include family and community, culture and language, health status, long-term health conditions, disability, health risk factors, immunisation, service use, hospitalisation rates and mortality.
Selected results from the 2002 National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social survey (NATSISS) and 2004–05 National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Survey (NATSIHS) reveal that:
- In 2002, eight out of ten older Indigenous people (81%) had been involved in social activities in the three months prior to the NATSISS. Around one-quarter (26%) of older Indigenous people had been involved in voluntary work in the previous 12 months.
- Over two-thirds of older Indigenous people (68%) said they had attended an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander cultural event in the previous 12 months.
- In 2004–05, 18% of Indigenous people aged 55 years and over reported their health as either very good or excellent, 32% reported their health as good and 50% reported their health as fair or poor.
- The most commonly reported long-term health conditions among older Indigenous people were arthritis (44%), high blood pressure (42%) and diabetes/high sugar levels (32%).
- Among Indigenous people who reported their height and weight, 24% of people aged 55 years and over were in the normal/healthy weight range, 34% were overweight and 39% were obese.
For further information about this snapshot, contact the Assistant Director, National Centre for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Statistics in Canberra on (02) 6252 6301.