4372.0 - National Health Survey: Cardiovascular and Related Conditions, Australia, 1995  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 11/11/1997   
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November 11, 1997
Embargoed: 11:30 AM (AEST)
One in five adults have a cardiovascular condition

One in five Australian adults (2.8 million people) reported that they had a cardiovascular condition (such as hypertension, heart disease, stroke, etc.), according to a publication released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

The publication National Health Survey: Cardiovascular and Related Conditions, Australia, 1995, draws on new information from the 1995 National Health Survey and includes some data from the ABS's Causes of Death collection.

The most common cardiovascular condition was hypertension which was reported by 14 per cent of the adult population.

Heart disease was reported by 4 per cent of adults, almost half a million people (493,500).

The prevalence of cardiovascular conditions increased with age from 4 per cent for 18-24 year olds to 61 per cent for those aged 75 years and over.

Cardiovascular conditions overall were more prevalent among women (23 per cent) than among men (19 per cent) and this was partly explained by the higher proportion of women reporting hypertension. However, a higher proportion of men (4 per cent) than women (3 per cent) reported heart disease. This latter difference was most marked among those aged 65-74 years, where 17 per cent of men compared with 9 per cent of women in this age group reported heart disease.

The State/Territory with the lowest prevalence of cardiovascular conditions was the Northern Territory, while Tasmania and New South Wales had the highest prevalence rates.

The age standardised death rate for cardiovascular conditions for the total Australian population declined from 399.3 deaths per 100,000 in 1981 to 252.0 deaths per 100,000 in 1995.

Ischaemic heart disease is the second leading cause of death (after cancer), accounting for about a quarter of all deaths.

The report also includes information on the health status and health risk factor related behaviour of people with cardiovascular conditions.

Copies of the publication National Health Survey: Cardiovascular and Related Conditions, Australia, 1995 (cat. no. 4372.0) are available from ABS book shops.