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4364.0.55.001 - Australian Health Survey: First Results, 2011-12  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 29/10/2012  First Issue
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Contents >> Key Findings


KEY FINDINGS


General health
  • In 2011-12 over half (55.6%) of all Australians aged 15 years and over considered themselves to be in very good or excellent health, while 4.0% rated their health as poor.

Long-term health conditions

Of the National Health Priority Areas, the top long-term health conditions experienced in Australia in 2011-12 were:
  • arthritis - 3.3 million people (14.8%)
  • mental and behavioural conditions - 3.0 million people (13.6%)
  • asthma - 2.3 million people (10.2%)
  • heart disease - 1.0 million people (4.7%)

Health risk factors

Tobacco smoking
  • Rates of daily smoking have continued to drop to 2.8 million people (16.3%) aged 18 years and over in 2011-12 from 18.9% in 2007-08 and 22.4% in 2001.

Alcohol consumption
  • The proportion of people aged 18 years and over who consumed more than two standard drinks per day on average, exceeding the National Health and Medical Research Council lifetime risk guidelines, decreased to 19.5% in 2011-12 from 20.9% in 2007-08.
  • 44.7% of people aged 18 years and over consumed more than four standard drinks at least once in the past year, exceeding the National Health and Medical Research Council single occasion risk guidelines.

Overweight and obesity
  • Prevalence of overweight and obesity in adults aged 18 years and over has continued to rise to 63.4% in 2011-12 from 61.2% in 2007-08 and 56.3% in 1995.
  • However the prevalence of overweight and obesity in children aged 5-17 has remained stable at 25.3% in 2011-12.

Physical measurements

Average height and weight
  • In 2011-12, the average Australian man (18 years and over) was 175.6 cm tall and weighed 85.9 kg. The average Australian woman was 161.8 cm tall and weighed 71.1 kg.
  • Between 1995 and 2011-12 the average height increased by 0.8 cm for men and by 0.4 cm for women.
  • Between 1995 and 2011-12 the average weight increased by 3.9 kg for men and by 4.1 kg for women.

Waist circumference
  • In 2011-12, 60.3% of men aged 18 years and over had a waist circumference that put them at an increased risk of developing chronic disease, while 66.6% of women had an increased level of risk.
  • On average, men had a waist measurement of 97.9 cm while women had a waist measurement of 87.7 cm.

Blood pressure
  • In 2011-12, just over 3.1 million people (21.5%) aged 18 years and over had measured high blood pressure (systolic or diastolic blood pressure equal to or greater than 140/90 mmHg).

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