3302.0 - Deaths, Australia, 2013 Quality Declaration 
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ABORIGINAL AND TORRES STRAIT ISLANDER DEATHS


DEATHS OF ABORIGINAL AND TORRES STRAIT ISLANDER AUSTRALIANS

There were 2,811 deaths registered in Australia in 2013 where the deceased person was recorded as being an Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander, or both (see table 1.2). For detailed data, see data cube Table 16: Deaths, Indigenous status, Selected states and territories - 1991 to 2013, from the Downloads tab.

1.2 DEATHS, Indigenous status - 2013

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander
Non-Indigenous
Not stated
Total
no.
%
no.
%
no.
%
no.

NSW
753
1.5
49 334
97.9
309
0.6
50 396
Vic.
123
0.3
35 774
99.6
19
0.1
35 916
Qld
765
2.7
26 631
95.4
505
1.8
27 901
SA
177
1.4
12 599
98.4
28
0.2
12 804
WA
457
3.4
12 804
95.5
153
1.1
13 414
Tas.
27
0.6
4 417
99.4
-
-
4 444
NT
489
44.6
606
55.2
np
np
1 097
ACT
18
1.1
1 675
98.5
7
0.4
1 700
Aust.(a)
2 811
1.9
143 844
97.4
1 023
0.7
147 678

- nil or rounded to zero (including null cells)
np not available for publication but included in totals where applicable, unless otherwise indicated
(a) Includes Other Territories.



Deaths by Year of registration and Year of occurrence

The following table presents deaths of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders by year of registration and year of occurrence separately for those deaths registered up to and including 31 December 2013. While the interval between the occurrence and registration of deaths is often longer among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians than among the non-Indigenous population, there is normally little difference between the number of deaths registered in a given year and the number of deaths that occurred in the same year for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians. This is because for each year, the number of deaths that are not registered in the year that they occur are compensated by deaths that occurred in the previous years but were subsequently registered. The table below illustrates that if data are routinely reported on a year of occurrence basis, deaths data for the latest year will be underestimated.

1.3 ABORIGINAL AND TORRES STRAIT ISLANDER DEATHS(a), States and territories(b)(c) - 1997 to 2013

NSW
Vic.
Qld(d)
SA
WA(e)
Tas.
NT
ACT
Aust.(e)(f)

YEAR OF REGISTRATION

1997
88
93
531
132
351
5
458
4
1 662
1998
462
123
593
127
378
13
415
3
2 114
1999
435
130
529
116
350
11
399
6
1 976
2000
473
108
535
144
407
np
450
np
2 127
2001
481
93
565
125
345
np
429
np
2 072
2002
516
64
590
107
371
20
462
4
2 136
2003
485
82
569
137
338
23
435
9
2 079
2004
490
54
579
131
400
20
449
10
2 136
2005
507
71
519
142
406
28
454
11
2 141
2006
530
111
584
124
443
20
452
14
2 279
2007
601
95
594
138
449
24
461
6
2 368
2008
559
97
562
141
486
24
467
16
2 353
2009
591
106
632
160
416
30
431
10
2 377
2010
622
117
948
147
436
37
447
13
2 767
2011
726
128
629
141
454
30
437
12
2 558
2012
635
100
678
151
466
45
539
6
2 620
2013
753
123
765
177
457
27
489
18
2 811

YEAR OF OCCURRENCE(g)

1997
98
106
567
137
382
5
408
3
1 706
1998
465
108
596
129
389
13
414
3
2 117
1999
433
105
540
117
347
12
438
7
1 999
2000
480
115
619
140
384
np
428
np
2 177
2001
487
81
581
122
368
np
430
np
2 100
2002
508
64
614
108
384
22
470
5
2 177
2003
494
83
594
144
324
22
418
12
2 093
2004
481
55
632
134
391
19
437
7
2 158
2005
507
81
541
140
416
32
493
12
2 225
2006
529
117
590
123
460
16
453
12
2 301
2007
599
94
588
140
461
25
463
8
2 378
2008
559
96
553
144
473
23
489
14
2 352
2009
596
109
626
147
409
33
437
12
2 370
2010
640
132
630
149
424
35
428
12
2 451
2011
711
104
646
145
444
32
478
11
2 571
2012
664
112
673
158
449
43
496
7
2 602
2013
690
95
680
154
389
26
384
17
2 437

np not available for publication but included in totals where applicable, unless otherwise indicated
(a) The death of a person who is recorded as being an Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander, or both on the Death Registration Form (DRF). From 2007, Indigenous status for deaths registered in South Australia, Western Australia, Tasmania, the Northern Territory and the Australian Capital Territory is also derived from the Medical Certificate of Cause of Death (MCCD). If the Indigenous status reported in DRF does not agree with that in MCCD an identification from either source that the deceased was an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander person is given preference over non-Indigenous. For New South Wales and Queensland, Indigenous status of the deceased is derived from the DRF only.
(b) State or territory of usual residence.
(c) Due to differing levels of recording Indigenous status by the states and territories and over time, care should be taken in interpreting change in numbers of deaths. As a result, data for Australia should not be analysed as a time series.
(d) Queensland began to register Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander deaths as such in 1996. Care should be taken when interpreting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander deaths data for Queensland for 2010. See Technical Note: Queensland Retrospective Deaths Project, and paragraph 36 of the Explanatory Notes of Deaths, Australia, 2010 (cat. no. 3302.0).
(e) The ABS has finalised investigations into the volatility of Aboriginal Torres Strait Islander deaths in Western Australia in the years 2007 to 2009. As a result relevant details for Western Australia and, as a consequence Australia, were revised on both year of registration and year of occurrence basis in Deaths, Australia, 2010 (cat. no. 3302.0).
(f) Includes Other Territories.
(g) Includes deaths registered up to and including 31 December 2013. The number of deaths presented on a year of occurrence basis are subject to change, as deaths that occurred prior to 31 December 2013 but have not yet been registered are registered in subsequent years. See paragraphs 25 and 26 of the Explanatory Notes for more information.



Median age

Median ages at death data for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians are only included in this release for New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia, Western Australia and the Northern Territory. Victoria, Tasmania and the Australian Capital Territory are excluded due to the small numbers of registered deaths recorded as being of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians.

In 2013, the median age at death of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians varied across the selected states and territories. For males New South Wales had the highest median age at death (58.5 years) and South Australia had the lowest (48.8 years). Similarly, for females New South Wales had the highest median age at death (66.2 years) and South Australia had the lowest (55.3 years). For detailed data, see data cube Table 17: Median age at death, Indigenous status, Selected states and territories - 1991 to 2013, from the Downloads tab.


Age-specific death rates

Age-specific death rates (ASDR) for 2009-2013 for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australian males and females, in nearly all age groups, were higher than the rates for non-Indigenous males and females. The exceptions were in the 65 years and over age group for New South Wales males and South Australia, both males and females.

For New South Wales and Queensland the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australian ASDRs were more than twice the rates for non-Indigenous Australians in the 25-54 years age group. Of these two states, Queensland had the largest difference for both males and females aged 35-44 years, where Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australian ASDRs were over three times higher than those recorded for non-Indigenous males and females.

For South Australia, Western Australia and the Northern Territory, ASDRs for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians in some age groups were five or more times higher than those for non-Indigenous Australians. For these states and the Northern Territory the largest differences in ASDRs occurred among males and females aged 35-44 years. For detailed data, see data cube Table 19: Age-specific death rates, Indigenous status, Selected states and territories - 2009-2013, from the Downloads tab.


Infant mortality rates

In 2011-2013, New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia, Western Australia and the Northern Territory recorded a combined infant mortality rate (IMR) for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians that was around twice the rate for non-Indigenous Australians (6.1 and 3.4 per 1,000 live births respectively).

In the Northern Territory, IMRs for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population remained fairly constant for the periods 2006-2008 and 2011-2013 at about 13.6 infant deaths per 1,000 live births. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander IMRs in the Northern Territory were the highest of all states and territories across the 2006-2008 to 2011-2013 period. In the other states the rates fluctuated due to the small and variable number of registered infant deaths in these jurisdictions during the period. For detailed data, see data cube Table 18: Infant mortality rates, Indigenous status, Selected states and territories - 1991 to 2013, from the Downloads tab.