4839.0.55.001 - Health Services: Patient Experiences in Australia, 2009  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 20/10/2011   
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Contents >> Hospital and Emergency >> Hospital emergency department visits


In 2009, approximately 2.3 million Australians aged 15 years and over visited a hospital emergency department. Around 73% of these people visited the emergency department only once in this time, while the remaining 27% (617,400 people) visited two or more times.

People from areas of most disadvantage were more likely to have visited a hospital emergency department more than once in the past year than people from areas of least disadvantage (see Figure 4.5 below).

4.5 Frequency of visits to hospital emergency department in last 12 months (a), by Index of disadvantage (b)

(See Table 4.4 for more detail)

People living in inner regional Australia (22%) were less likely to have visited a hospital emergency department two or more times in the year than people living in outer regional or remote parts of Australia (32%).

People who considered their health to be fair or poor were more likely to have visited an emergency department more often than people who rated their health as good or better (see Table 4.5). This was also the case for people who were unemployed or not in the labour force compared with those who were employed (see Table 4.4).

Age and sex did not appear to have a significant impact on the frequency of visits to a hospital emergency department.

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