Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander life expectancy lowest in remote and very remote areas

Released
29/11/2018

The life expectancy at birth for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians in 2015-2017 was 71.6 years for men and 75.6 years for women, according to figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

“However, life expectancy within the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population varied considerably, with the lowest life expectancy experienced by those living in the more remote parts of the country” said Anthony Grubb, Director of Demography at the ABS.

“Life expectancy at birth for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people living in remote and very remote areas was 65.9 years for men and 69.6 years for women, while those living in major cities had the highest life expectancy (72.1 years and 76.5 years for men and women respectively).”

“Today’s figures show that life expectancy estimates for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians remain lower than for the non- Indigenous population. The life expectancy at birth of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men in 2015-2017 was 8.6 years lower than for non-Indigenous men, while that of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women was 7.8 years lower than that of non-Indigenous women".

These differences were more marked in remote and very remote areas, where the difference in life expectancy at birth for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population compared with the non-Indigenous population was 13.8 years for men and 14.0 years for women.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people living in the Northern Territory and Western Australia had the lowest life expectancy estimates.

Today’s release suggests the differences in life expectancy between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and non-Indigenous Australians narrowed slightly over the five-year period since 2010-2012.

Life expectancy at birth, Remoteness Areas - 2015-2017(a)

 Aboriginal and Torres Strait IslanderNon-IndigenousDifference between
non-Indigenous and
Aboriginal and
Torres Strait Islander
life expectancy at birth(b)
MALES
Major Cities
72.1
80.7
8.6
Inner and Outer Regional
70.0
79.1
9.1
Remote and Very Remote
65.9
79.7
13.8
FEMALES
Major Cities
76.5
83.7
7.2
Inner and Outer Regional
74.8
82.8
8.0
Remote and Very Remote
69.6
83.6
14.0
DIFFERENCE BETWEEN MALES AND FEMALES
Major Cities
-4.4
-3.0
. .
Inner and Outer Regional
-4.8
-3.7
. .
Remote and Very Remote
-3.8
-3.9
. .
.. not applicable.
a. Based on the average number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander deaths registered in 2015-2017 adjusted for under/over identification of Indigenous Status in registrations, and final Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population estimates for 30 June 2016 based on the 2016 Census.
b. Differences are based on unrounded estimates.
 

Life expectancy at birth, states and territory - 2015-2017(a)

 LIFE EXPECTANCY AT BIRTH 
 Aboriginal and Torres Strait IslanderNon-IndigenousDifference between
non-Indigenous and
Aboriginal and
Torres Strait Islander
life expectancy at birth(b)
 yearsyearsyears
MALES
NSW
70.9
80.2
9.4
Qld
72.0
79.8
7.8
WA
66.9
80.3
13.4
NT
66.6
78.1
11.5
Aust.(c)
71.6
80.2
8.6
FEMALES
NSW
75.9
83.5
7.6
Qld
76.4
83.2
6.7
WA
71.8
83.8
12.0
NT
69.9
82.7
12.8
Aust.(c)
75.6
83.4
7.8
a. Based on the average number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander deaths registered in 2015-2017 adjusted for under/over identification of Indigenous Status in registrations, and final Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population estimates for 30 June 2016 based on the 2016 Census.
b. Differences are based on unrounded estimates.
c. These life expectancy estimates are calculated taking age-specific identification rates into account.
 

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