4430.0.30.002 - Microdata: Disability, Ageing and Carers, Australia, 2009 Quality Declaration 
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 09/03/2012  Reissue
   Page tools: Print Print Page Print all pages in this productPrint All



Confidentialised Unit Record Files (CURFs) are released in accordance with the conditions specified in the Statistics Determination section of the Census and Statistics Act 1905 (CSA). This ensures that confidentiality is maintained whilst enabling micro level data to be released. More information on the confidentiality practices associated with CURFs can be found on the About CURF Microdata page.

For information on the institutional environment of the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), including the legislative obligations of the ABS, financing and governance arrangements, and mechanisms for scrutiny of ABS operations, please see ABS Institutional Environment.


Microdata from the Survey of Disability, Ageing and Carers (SDAC) are available as a Basic CURF and in Survey TableBuilder. The microdata contains information about a range of indicators which measure the prevalence of disability in Australia and provides information about people who provide care to older people and people with disabilities. Information on the support that people need due to disability or old age is also collected, as well as demographic, socio-economic and employment characteristics.

The level of detail provided for selected data items are available within the data item lists. The data item list for the Basic CURF and Survey TableBuilder can be found by clicking on the Downloads tab of this product.


The most recent Survey of Disability, Ageing and Carers was conducted throughout Australia from April to December 2009. The ABS has been conducting similar surveys on a five to seven year basis since 1981. The microdata products are released approximately 12 months after enumeration is completed.


The microdata generally contains finer levels of detail of data items than what is otherwise published in other formats, for example, in Disability, Ageing and Carers, Australia: Summary of Findings, 2009 (cat. no. 4430.0). For more information on the level of detail provided, see the associated data item listings.

Steps to confidentialise the data made available on the microdata are taken in such a way as to maximise the usefulness of the content while maintaining the confidentiality of respondents selected in the survey. As a result, it may not be possible to exactly reconcile all the statistics produced from the microdata with other published statistics. Further information about the steps taken to confidentialise the microdata is available through the following links:

CURF confidentiality
Survey TableBuilder confidentiality


Results from the two previous household surveys on this topic were published in Disability, Ageing and Carers, Australia: Summary of Findings, 2003 (cat. no. 4430.0) and Disability, Ageing and Carers, Australia: Summary of Findings, 1998 (cat. no. 4430.0). Data from the first three disability surveys (1981, 1988 and 1993) can be obtained by contacting the National Information and Referral Service on 1300 135 070.

Much of the content of the six disability surveys conducted by the ABS in 1981, 1988, 1993, 1998, 2003 and 2009 is comparable. There are differences however, as later surveys have attempted to obtain better coverage of disability, specific tasks and activities previously considered too sensitive for a population survey and identification of primary carers. For the 2003 survey, the inclusion of questions relating to unmet need for and receipt of assistance with cognition or emotion provided a better perspective on assistance needs and requirements for both physical and psychological needs. Further enhancements to measuring unmet need were added to the 2009 survey.

The Explanatory Notes section of Disability, Ageing and Carers, Australia: Summary of Findings, 2009 (cat. no. 4430.0) provides more detailed information on the differences between the ABS disability surveys over time.


The information within this product should be referred to when using the microdata. It contains information including Survey methodology, File structure, Using the CURF, Using the Survey TableBuilder, Conditions of use and the data item lists.

The Disability, Ageing and Carers, Australia: User Guide, 2009 (cat. no. 4431.0.55.001) includes information on the survey objectives, survey methods and design, survey content, data quality and interpretation, output data items, information about the availability of results and comparability with previous surveys. Further information can also be found in the Explanatory Notes section of Disability, Ageing and Carers, Australia: Summary of Findings, 2009 (cat. no. 4430.0).


Microdata products are available to approved users. Users wishing to access the microdata should read the How to Apply for Microdata web page, before applying for access through MiCRO. Users should also familiarise themselves with information available via the Microdata web pages.

A full list of available microdata can be viewed via the List of expected and available Microdata. More detail regarding types and modes of access to CURFs can be found on the CURF Access Modes and Levels of Detail web page.

SDAC 2009 can be accessed using Survey TableBuilder. The Basic CURF can be accessed on CD-ROM, through the Remote Access Data Laboratory (RADL) and the ABS Data Laboratory (ABSDL).

Any questions regarding access to microdata can be forwarded to microdata.access@abs.gov.au or phone (02) 6252 7714.