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A respondent aged 18 years or over.
Age standardisation is a way of allowing comparisons between two or more populations with different age structures, in order to remove age as a factor when examining relationships between variables. For example, the age structure of the population of Australia is changing over time. As the prevalence of a particular health condition (for example, arthritis) may be related to age, any increase in the proportion of people with that health condition over time may be due to real increases in prevalence or to changes in the age structure of the population over time or to both. Age standardising removes the effect of age in assessing change over time or between different populations.
Proportions quoted in commentary in the National Health Survey: First Results, 2014-15 (cat. no. 4364.0.55.001) are not age-standardised, however, proportions presented in Tables 1 and 2 include age standardised rates. Data are age standardised to the 2001 Australian population.
Alcohol consumption risk level
Alcohol consumption risk levels in the National Health Survey: First Results, 2014-15 (cat. no. 4364.0.55.001) have been assessed using the 2001 and 2009 National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) guidelines for the consumption of alcohol.
Risk in the longer term (2001 guidelines) and lifetime risk (2009 guidelines) was assessed using average daily consumption of alcohol for persons aged 15 years and over, derived from the type, brand, number and serving sizes of beverages consumed on the three most recent days of the week prior to interview, in conjunction with the total number of days alcohol was consumed in the week prior to interview.
Risk in the short term (2001 guidelines) and single occasion risk (2009 guidelines) was assessed using questions on the number of times in the last 12 months a person's consumption exceeded specified levels.
2001 NHMRC GUIDELINES
2009 NHMRC GUIDELINES(a)
Alcohol consumption status information was also collected for persons who did not consume any alcohol in the 7 days prior to interview, categorised as:
For more detailed information on the 2001 NHMRC guidelines, see the Australian Alcohol Guidelines: Health Risks and Benefits and for the 2009 guidelines, see the Australian Guidelines to Reduce Health Risks from Drinking Alcohol and Frequently Asked Questions.
For a detailed explanation of the method used to measure alcohol consumption in ABS health surveys, see Alcohol Consumption in Australia: A Snapshot, 2007-08 (cat. no. 4832.0.55.001).
Arthritis is characterised by an inflammation of the joints often resulting in pain, stiffness, disability and deformity.
A chronic disease marked by episodes of wheezing, chest tightness and shortness of breath associated with widespread narrowing of the airways within the lungs and obstruction of airflow. To be current, symptoms of asthma or treatment for asthma must have occurred in the last 12 months.
Accessibility/Remoteness Index of Australia
Accessibility/Remoteness Index of Australia (ARIA) was developed by the Commonwealth Department of Health and Ageing (DoHA) and the National Key Centre for Social Applications of GIS (GISCA). ARIA measures the remoteness of a point based on the physical road distance to the nearest Urban Centre in each of five size classes. For more information on how ARIA is defined see Information Paper: ABS Views on Remoteness, 2001 (cat. no. 1244.0) and Information Paper: Outcomes of ABS Views on Remoteness Consultation, Australia, Jun 2001 (cat. no. 1244.0.00.001). Also refer to Census Geography Paper 03/01 - ASGC Remoteness Classification - Purpose and Use, available from the ABS web site.
ASGC and ASGS Remoteness Structure
The Remoteness Structure for the Australian Standard Geographical Classification (ASGC) 2006 and the Australian Statistical Geography Standard (ASGS) 2011, has 5 categories based on an aggregation of geographical areas which share common characteristics of remoteness, determined in the context of Australia as a whole. The criteria for these categories are based on the Accessibility/Remoteness Index of Australia (ARIA). For more details, see Accessibility/Remoteness Index of Australia definition above and the Geographical Classifications subtopic in this Users’ Guide.
Australian Dietary Guidelines
The National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) 2013 Australian Dietary Guidelines use the best available scientific evidence to provide information on the types and amounts of foods, food groups, and dietary patterns that aim to:
The Guidelines are for use by health professionals, policy makers, educators, food manufacturers, food retailers and researchers.
The content of the Australian Dietary Guidelines applies to all healthy Australians, as well as those with common diet-related risk factors such as being overweight. They do not apply to people who need special dietary advice for a medical condition, or to the frail elderly.
See Usual daily intake of fruit and Usual daily intake of vegetables.
Australian Health Survey (AHS)
The Australian Health Survey 2011-13 is composed of three separate surveys:
In addition to this, the AHS Survey contains a Core dataset, which is produced from questions that are common to both the NHS and NNPAS. See Australian Health Survey Core Dataset for details.
The AHS Core Dataset is produced from the question sets that are common to both NHS and NNPAS. The questions set include the following topics:
See High blood pressure, Diastolic blood pressure and Systolic blood pressure.
Indication of the severity of any bodily pain that the respondent had experienced (from any and all causes) during the last 4 weeks. This is a self-assessment from the SF36 international instrument. Data was collected from respondents aged 18 years and over.
Body Mass Index (BMI)
Body Mass Index (BMI) is a simple index of weight-for-height that is commonly used to classify underweight, normal weight, overweight and obesity. It is calculated from height and weight information, using the formula (kg) divided by the square of height (m). To produce a measure of prevalence of underweight, normal weight, overweight or obesity in adults, BMI values are grouped according to the table below
Separate BMi classifications were produced for children. BMI scores were created in the same manner described above but also took into account the age and sex of the child. There are different cutoffs for BMI categories (underweight/normal combined, overweight or obese) for male and female children. These categories differ to the categories used in the adult BMI classification and follow the scale provided in Cole TJ, Bellizzi MC, Flegal KM and Dietz WH, Establishing a standard definition for child overweight and obesity worldwide: international survey, BMJ 2000; 320.
For a detailed list of the cutoffs used to calculate BMI for children see Appendix 4: Classification of BMI for Children.
A person aged 0-17 years.
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), a serious long-term lung disease, is the occurrence of chronic bronchitis or emphysema, a pair of commonly co-existing diseases of the lungs in which airways become narrowed. It mainly affects older people and is often difficult to distinguish from asthma.
In this survey, comorbid conditions refers to two or more medical conditions, which a respondent has reported as current long-term conditions they have. See also Comorbidity.
In this survey, comorbidity is a term used to describe the occurrence of two or more conditions. Some comorbidity (self report) data items have been produced for specific combinations of conditions to aid this type of analysis.
However, it is possible to utilise the available condition data in the ICD-10 data items to undertake analysis of additional combinations of health conditions. Different restrictions (for example whether a condition is diagnosed, or whether a condition is current) can also be applied to individual conditions when undertaking analysis.
For more information on the comorbidity data items available and the definitions used for the conditions within these items, see Comorbidity (Self Report).
Conditions/Type of condition
Condition status brings together information about whether or not a person has ever been told by a doctor or nurse they have a condition, whether a condition was current at the time of the survey, and, if current, whether the condition was long-term (i.e. had lasted or was expected to last for 6 months or more).
Current daily smoker
A current daily smoker is a respondent who reported at the time of interview that they regularly smoked one or more cigarettes, cigars or pipes per day. See also Smoker status.
Includes partial or total loss of hearing.
A chronic condition in which blood glucose levels become too high due to the body producing little or not insulin, or not using insulin properly.
Diastolic blood pressure
Measures the pressure in the arteries as the heart relaxes before the next beat. It is the lower number of the blood pressure reading.
A disability or restrictive long term health condition exists if a limitation, restriction, impairment, disease or disorder, has lasted, or is expected to last for six months or more, and restricts everyday activities.
It is classified by whether or not a person has a specific limitation or restriction. Specific limitation or restriction is further classified by whether the limitation or restriction is a limitation in core activities or a schooling/employment restriction only.
There are four levels of core activity limitation (profound, severe, moderate and mild) which are based on whether a person needs help, has difficulty, or uses aids or equipment with any of the core activities (self care, mobility or communication). A person's overall level of core activity limitation is determined by their highest level of limitation in these activities.
Persons aged 15 years and over who had a job or business, or who undertook work without pay in a family business for a minimum of one hour per week. Includes persons who were absent from a job or business. See also Unemployed and Not in the labour force.
Equivalisation is a process whereby reported household income is adjusted to take account of the size and composition of the household. For further details see Household and Family Characteristics.
Based on frequency, intensity (that is, walking, moderate exercise or vigorous exercise) and duration of exercise (for fitness, recreation or sport) in the one week prior to interview. From these, an exercise score was derived using factors to represent the intensity of the exercise.
For more information see Appendix 6: Classification of Adult Physical Activity and Appendix 7: Classification of Child Physical Activity.
Two or more persons, one of whom is at least 15 years of age, who are related by blood, marriage (registered or de facto), adoption, step or fostering; and who are usually resident in the same household. The basis of a family is formed by identifying the presence of a couple relationship, lone parent-child relationship or other blood relationship. Some households will, therefore, contain more than one family.
The differentiation of families based on the presence or absence of couple relationships, parent-child relationships, child dependency relationships or other blood relationships, in that order of preference.
Fat content of milk
An indication of intake of fat. Categorised as:
Hayfever and allergic rhinitis
An allergic inflammation of the nasal airways occurring when an allergen, such as pollen or dust, is inhaled by an individual with a sensitised immune system. When caused specifically by grass pollens it is known as 'hayfever'.
Health risk factors
Specific lifestyle related factors impacting on health, including:
High blood pressure
A household is defined as one or more persons, at least one of whom is at least 15 years of age, usually resident in the same private dwelling. In this survey, only households with at least one adult (aged 18 years and over) were included.
Reported as the sum of the personal cash incomes of all household members aged 15 years and over. Household income is available in dollar amounts and deciles/quintiles, in reported and equivalised form. For further details see Income Sources.
ICD-10 refers to the tenth revision of the International Classification of Diseases and Health Related Problems. The classification of long-term conditions most commonly used in output from the 2014-15 NHS was developed for use in this survey based on the ICD-10. See Appendix 2: Classification of Health Conditions for the content of the classifications.
Incidence refers to the number of new cases of a particular characteristic, such as cancer, which occur within a certain period. This differs from prevalence, which refers to the number of cases of a particular characteristic that are present in a population at one point in time.
Refers to people who identified themselves, or were identified by another household member, as being of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander origin.
Long-term health condition
A medical condition (illness, injury or disability) which has lasted at least six months, or which the respondent expects to last for six months or more.
Margin of Error (MoE)
Margin of Error describes the distance from the population value that the sample estimate is likely to be within, and is specified at a given level of confidence. Confidence levels typically used are 90%, 95% and 99%. For example, at the 95% confidence level the MoE indicates that there are about 19 chances in 20 that the estimate will differ by less than the specified MoE from the population value (the figure obtained if all dwellings had been enumerated). For further information see Technical Note and Data Quality.
Metabolic Equivalent of Task (MET) or intensity values are a measure of the energy expenditure required to carry out physical activity, expressed as a multiple of the resting metabolic rate (RMR). MET is defined as the ratio of metabolic rate (and therefore the rate of energy consumption) during a specific physical activity to a reference rate of metabolic rate at rest. MET or intensity values operate as a factor when determining level of exercise. For further information see Exercise.
Minerals are chemical elements required for a very wide variety of functions including cell function, muscle function, bone formation, hormone production and fluid balance. Some minerals are essential for health and are classified into major and trace elements according to the quantity required by the body.
National Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey (NNPAS)
The 2011-12 National Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey focused on collecting information on:
The number of cases, of a particular characteristic (e.g. a specific long-term condition such as cancer), that are present in a population at one point in time. This differs from incidence, which refers to the number of new cases of a particular characteristic occurring within a certain period.
Priority, targeted conditions
A proxy is a person who answers the survey questions when the person selected for the interview is incapable of answering for themselves. Reasons the selected person may not be able to answer for themselves include illness/injury or language difficulties. A proxy also answers on behalf of a child under 15 years of age; or for a child aged 15-17 years when parental consent is not given to interview them personally. For further information see the Personal and Proxy Interviews section of Data Collection.
Self-assessed health status
A person's general assessment of their own health against a five point scale from excellent through to poor. Data was collected from respondents aged 15 years and over.
To determine whether a difference between two survey estimates is a real difference in the populations to which the estimates relate, or merely the product of different sampling variability, the statistical significance of the difference can be tested. This is particularly useful for interpreting apparent changes in estimates over time. The test is done by calculating the standard error of the difference between two estimates and then dividing the actual difference by the standard error of the difference. If the result is greater than 1.96, there are 19 chances in 20 that there is a real difference in the populations to which the estimates relate. For further information see Data Quality and Interpretation of Results.
The Indexes available for use with 2014-15 NHS data are those compiled from the 2011 Census of Population and Housing. For further information about the indexes, see Household and Family Characteristics.
Stratification involves dividing a population or dataset in to like groups and can be used in sampling or statistical analysis.
For the purpose of the 2014-15 NHS, dietary supplements refer to products defined as Complementary Medicines under the Therapeutic Goods Regulations 1990 and that are not intended for inhalation or use on the skin. They include products containing ingredients that are nutrients, such as multi-vitamin or fish oil products.
Type of milk
Main type of milk usually consumed, including cow's milk, soy milk, evaporated and condensed milk, and other unspecified types of milk.
Exercise for fitness, recreation or sport which caused a large increase in heart rate or breathing.
Vitamins are organic compounds found naturally in foods and are either fat or water soluble. They are required in small amounts. Vitamins enable the human body to function efficiently by regulating biochemical processes such as growth metabolism, cell reproduction, digestion, and oxidation of the blood.
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