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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USE OF MEDICAL FACILITIES
Medical facilities play a crucial role in maintaining a healthy society. People access medical facilities such as hospitals, clinics and emergency departments to detect and treat illness or injury.
In 2014-15, around 5.6 million Australians (24.6%) had attended a medical facility for their own health within the last 12 months (either admitted to hospital as an inpatient, visited an outpatient clinic, emergency/casualty department and/or day clinic). This rate was similar to that in 2011-12 (24.9%).
Just over 1 in 10 people visited an emergency department at a hospital (12% or 2.8 million people) and just over 1 in 10 had been admitted to hospital as an inpatient (11.4% or 2.6 million). Less than 1 in 10 people had visited outpatient clinics (7.5%) or day clinics (5.4%). These rates were similar to 2011-12.
The use of medical facilities increased with age. In 2014-15, just over 1 in 5 Australians aged 54 years or less (21.3%) had attended a medical facility within the last 12 months. This compared with 2 in 5 people aged 75 years and over (41.0%). More specifically, just under 1 in 10 Australians aged 54 years or less (9.0%) had been admitted to hospital as an inpatient compared with one-quarter (24.4%) of those aged 75 years and over.
Women were more likely than men to have been admitted to hospital as an inpatient (12.7% compared with 10.0%) particularly for those aged 25-34 years (17.4% of women were admitted to hospital compared with only 5.7% of men), and not evident in age groups beyond 45 years suggesting a correlation with the child-bearing years. Similarly women aged 25-34 years were more likely to visit an outpatient clinic (10.1% of women compared with 2.2% of men). There was no difference between the sexes in regard to visiting an emergency department (12.0% each).
Source(s): National Health Survey: Health Service Usage and Health Related Actions, 2014-15
Adults (18 years and over) who were overweight or obese were more likely than those who were not overweight to use a medical facility (32.2% of obese people and 25.9% of overweight people, compared with 22.6% of people who were not overweight).
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