4364.0.55.002 - Health Service Usage and Health Related Actions, Australia, 2014-15  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 27/03/2017   
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People with long-term health conditions often manage their conditions through healthy lifestyles, medical consultations, treatments and/or use of medications.

This section of the publication reviews actions taken by people for specific long-term health conditions. Respondents with particular conditions were asked questions about how they treat and manage their condition(s) through a variety of actions such as consultations with health professionals, use of medical facilities, medication use and lifestyle behaviours. Information on participation in preventive programs such as screening for cancer was also collected.

The specific conditions for which actions information was collected were:
  • arthritis;
  • asthma;
  • cancer;
  • diabetes;
  • diseases of the circulatory system;
  • kidney disease;
  • mental and behavioural conditions; and
  • osteoporosis.


The actions taken for the management and treatment of a long-term health condition vary depending upon the condition. Some conditions require closer, more regular monitoring while other conditions, once properly managed, require little or less regular monitoring.

Consultations with health professionals

In 2014-15, the proportion of people who had consultations with health professionals in the last 12 months differed across conditions. For example, people with diabetes were more likely to have consulted a GP for their condition in the last 12 months than people with other long-term health conditions (84.8%).

People with cancer were most likely to visit a specialist for their condition (76.6%) followed by people with kidney disease (49.1%), and people with any other condition (ranging between 6.0% of those with asthma and 24.3% of those with diabetes).

These patterns were similar to 2011-12.

Graph Image for All persons - Proportion who consulted a health professional for their condition in last 12 months, 2014-15

Source(s): National Health Survey: Health Service Usage and Health Related Actions, 2014-15

Days off work or study/school

Some people who were currently employed or studying/at school had to take time off in the last 12 months due to their long-term health condition. The proportion of people who had to take time off varied between conditions. People with cancer were proportionally most likely to take time off due to their condition (34.7%), followed by people with a mental or behavioural condition (28.2%).