4125.0 - Gender Indicators, Australia, Feb 2016  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 23/02/2016   
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HEALTH

The Health section contains the following sub-topics:
  • Health Status (life expectancy, long-term health conditions, living with disability, mental health)
  • Deaths (death rates, rates by condition/cause of death, perinatal deaths)
  • Risk Factors (Alcohol consumption, smoking, overweight and obesity, exercise)
  • Services (Medicare services)
Detailed data for these sub-topics is available from the Downloads tab above (see Table 3).


HIGHLIGHTS

Health Status

Life expectancy
    In 2012-14, Australian life expectancy was 80.3 years for males and 84.4 years for females: that is, based on current mortality rates, a boy born in 2012-2014 could expect to live 80.3 years, while a girl could expect to live 84.4 years. The gap between male and female life expectancy rates continues to narrow (see Figure 1 below, and Table 3.1 via the Downloads tab for more detail).

    Graph Image for Figure 1 - Life expectancy at birth by sex, 1998 to 2014 (a)

    Footnote(s): (a) Based on three years of data ending in the year shown in the table heading.

    Source(s): ABS Deaths, Australia (cat. no. 3302.0)

      As of 2012-14, the proportion of females surviving from birth to age 85 had reached almost 60%, compared with 45% of males (see Table 3.1).
    Long-term health conditions (morbidity prevalence)
      In 2014-15, females were slightly more likely to report a long-term condition than males, continuing the long-term trend. Arthritis continues to be a commonly reported long-term health condition for both males (12.3%) and females (18.3%), especially those aged 65 years and over, where the proportions with arthritis grew to around 41% of men and 60% of women (see Table 3.3 via the Downloads tab for more detail).

      Graph Image for Figure 2 - One or more reported long-term health conditions by sex, 2001 to 2014-15 (a)

      Footnote(s): (a) Unless otherwise specified this includes current conditions which have lasted or are expected to last for six months or more. A change in collection methodology for mental and behavioural conditions between 2011 and 2014-15 means that data is not directly comparable between 2014-15 and earlier years. (b) Cells in this table containing 2014-15 National Health Survey: First Results data have been randomly adjusted to avoid the release of confidential data. Discrepancies may occur between sums of the component items and totals.

      Source(s): ABS National Health Survey: First Results, 2014-15 (cat. no. 4364.0.55.001)


    Living with disability
      In 2012, after adjusting for the effects of age, proportions of males and females with disability were similar at 17.6% and 17.3% respectively, with proportions of those reporting profound or severe core activity limitation also close at 5.4% of males and 6.0% of females (see Table 3.6).

      Rates of disability for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people were much higher. In 2012-13, after adjusting for age, just under 51% of both male and female Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders aged 15 years and over reported a disability. Across all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander persons (all ages), 8.0% of males and 9.3% of females reported a profound or severe core activity limitation (see Table 3.7).
    Mental health
      In 2014-15, after adjusting for the effects of age, 13.7% of women and 9.8% of men aged 18 years and over experienced high or very high levels of psychological distress. The highest proportion of people reporting this level of distress were young women aged 18-24 years (20.0% in 2014-15 compared with 11.1% of young men). See Figure 3 below, and Table 3.8 via the Downloads tab for more detail.

      Graph Image for Figure 3 - High and very high level of psychological distress by sex and age, 2001 to 2014-15 (a)

      Footnote(s): (a) Distress levels calculated using the Kessler 10 scale of psychological distress (K10). (b) Cells in this table containing 2014-15 National Health Survey: First Results data have been randomly adjusted to avoid the release of confidential data. Discrepancies may occur between sums of the component items and totals.

      Source(s): ABS National Health Survey: First Results, 2014-15 (cat. no. 4364.0.55.001)


    Deaths

    Death rates
      The standardised death rate for males and females in 2014 was 6.4 and 4.6 deaths per 1,000 people, respectively. This rate has been generally declining for both males and females over the past 15 years, continuing a long established trend.

      Males have higher age-specific death rates than females in all age groups from 15-19 years, ranging from one and a half times to more than double those of females (see Table 3.12 for details).
    Rates by condition/cause of death
      In 2013, males were one and a half times more likely than females to die from cancer, and almost twice as likely as females to die from Ischaemic heart disease.

      The suicide rate for males was at least three times higher than females, death rates from motor vehicle accidents were nearly three times higher, and drug-induced death rates were over one and half times higher than those of females (see Figure 4 below, and Tables 3.12 to 3.21 via the Downloads tab for more detail).

      Graph Image for Figure 4 - Death rate from suicide, motor vehicles and drugs, 2004 to 2013 (a)(b)

      Footnote(s): (a) Rates have been age standardised to the 2001 Australian standard population to account for differences in the age structure of the population over time. Standardised death rates (SDRs) are expressed per 100,000 males and females of the Estimated Resident Population (ERP) as at 30 June of that year. (b) Deaths per 100,000 of the Estimated Resident Population (ERP) of the same age and sex as at 30 June of the year. (c) Care needs to be taken in interpreting figures relating to suicide. Please see Explanatory Notes in ABS Causes of Death. (d) For more information on the list of ICD-10 codes that contribute to the definition of drug induced deaths see Appendix 2: Tabulation of Selected Causes of Death in ABS Causes of Death.

      Source(s): ABS Causes of Death, Australia, 2013 (cat. no. 3303.0)


    Perinatal deaths
      In 2013, the perinatal death rate was 8.2 (deaths per 1,000 births for the calendar year), down from 10.1 in 2000 (see Table 3.22).

    Risk Factors

    Alcohol consumption
      Fewer Australian men and women overall are consuming alcohol in quantities which present a lifetime risk (according to the 2009 NHMRC guidelines). Levels of risky consumption have been decreasing since 2004-05, with the largest decrease being for men between 2011-12 and 2014-15 (a 4.5 percentage point decrease). Overall, after adjusting for the effects of age, Australian men aged 18 years and over were more than twice as likely to exceed the guideline as women the same age (24.4% compared with 8.8%). See Figure 5 below, and Table 3.24 via the Downloads tab for more detail.

      Graph Image for Figure 5 - Persons 18 years and over, risky alcohol consumption by sex (a)(b)(d)

      Footnote(s): (a) In 2009, the NHMRC published Australian Guidelines: to Reduce Health Risks from Drinking Alcohol. These guidelines are a revision to 2001 Guidelines to Reduce Health Risks from Drinking Alcohol. (b) Proportions have been age standardised to the 2001 Australian population to account for differences in the age structure of the population over time. (c) Cells in this table containing 2014-15 National Health Survey: First Results data have been randomly adjusted to avoid the release of confidential data. Discrepancies may occur between sums of the component items and totals. (d) Risky alcohol consumption refers to quantities that present a lifetime risk

      Source(s): ABS National Health Survey: First Results, 2014-15 (cat. no. 4364.0.55.001)



      Proportions of young men (aged 18-24) exceeding the lifetime risk guideline dropped from 31.6% in 2001 to 18.9% in 2014-15. Proportions of women aged 65 years and over exceeding the threshold, however, have been rising - from 5.9% in 2001 to 9.9% in 2014-15 (see Table 3.24).
    Smoking
      Fewer Australian men and women are smoking, continuing the long term trend. Between 2001 and 2014-15, women aged 25-34 years had the largest decrease for women (from 28.4% to 14.2%), while men aged 18-24 years had the largest decrease for men, dropping from 35.3% in 2001 to 16.2% in 2014-15 (see Table 3.26 via the Downloads tab for more detail).

      Graph Image for Figure 6 - Current smokers, 18 years and over, by sex (a)(b)

      Footnote(s): (a) Proportions have been age standardised to the 2001 Australian population to account for differences in the age structure of the population over time. (b) Includes Current smoker daily, Current smoker weekly (at least once a week but not daily) and Current smoker less than weekly. (c) Cells in this table containing 2014-15 National Health Survey: First Results data have been randomly adjusted to avoid the release of confidential data. Discrepancies may occur between sums of the component items and totals.

      Source(s): ABS National Health Survey: First Results, 2014-15 (cat. no. 4364.0.55.001)

    Overweight/obesity
      Between 1995 and 2014-15, after adjusting for age, proportions of men who are obese have increased from 18.9% to 27.9%, while those of women have increased from 19.1% to 27.0%. A further 42.5% of men and 28.4% of women were overweight in 2014-15 (see Table 3.28).

      Graph Image for Figure 7 - Measured overweight and obese by sex, 18 years and over, 1995 to 2014-15 (a)(b)(c)

      Footnote(s): (a) Measured Body Mass Index is based on measured height and weight and continues to be collected. (b) In 2014-15, 26.8% of respondents aged 18 years and over did not have their height, weight or both measured. For these respondents, imputation was used to obtain height, weight and BMI scores. (c) Proportions have been age standardised to the 2001 Australian population. (d) Cells in this table containing 2014-15 National Health Survey: First Results data have been randomly adjusted to avoid the release of confidential data. Discrepancies may occur between sums of the component items and totals.

      Source(s): ABS National Health Survey: First Results, 2014-15 (cat. no. 4364.0.55.001)



      Men aged 65-74 years had the largest increase in rates of obesity between 1995 and 2014-15 (from 21.2% to 38.2%), while women aged 35-44 years had the largest increase (from 16.7% in 1995 to 30.7% in 2014-15). See Table 3.28 for more detail.
    Level of exercise
      Levels of exercise differ for males and females, with females 15 years and over more likely to be sedentary or engage in low levels of exercise than males the same age. In 2014-15, after adjusting for the effects of age, 68.7% of females and 61.2% of males were sedentary or engaged in low levels of exercise. Proportions have dropped since 2007-08, however, from 75.7% of females and 68.8% of males (see Figures 8 and 9 below, and Table 3.31 via the Downloads tab for more detail).
      Graph Image for Figure 8 - Sedentary or engaging in low levels of exercise, males 15 years and over, 2007-08 to 2014-15 (a)

      Footnote(s): (a) Level of exercise undertaken for fitness, recreation or sport in the last week. (b) Cells in this table containing 2014-15 National Health Survey: First Results data have been randomly adjusted to avoid the release of confidential data. Discrepancies may occur between sums of the component items and totals.

      Source(s): ABS National Health Survey: First Results, 2014-15 (cat. no. 4364.0.55.001)


      Graph Image for Figure 9 - Sedentary or engaging in low levels of exercise, females 15 years and over, 2007-08 to 2014-15 (a)

      Footnote(s): (a) Level of exercise undertaken for fitness, recreation or sport in the last week. (b) Cells in this table containing 2014-15 National Health Survey: First Results data have been randomly adjusted to avoid the release of confidential data. Discrepancies may occur between sums of the component items and totals.

      Source(s): ABS National Health Survey: First Results, 2014-15 (cat. no. 4364.0.55.001)


    Services
      The average number of Medicare services processed per year for both males and females has steadily increased between 2000-01 and 2014-15 (from an average of 9 and 13 services per year respectively in 2000-01, to 13 and 17.8 respectively in 2014-15). Overall, the number of Medicare services processed is higher for females than males. Since 2000-01, females have claimed an average of 15 services annually, compared with 11 for males (see Table 3.34).

      However, the average number of Medicare services processed for men aged 65 years and over has consistently exceeded that of women the same age: between 2000-01 and 2014-15, men aged 65 years and over have accessed an annual average of 33 services, compared with 28 for women aged 65 years and over (see Table 3.35).