There were 143,900 deaths registered in Australia in 2008, approximately 6,100 (4.4%) more than the number registered in 2007 (137,900).
The standardised death rate (SDR) has remained at 6.0 deaths per 1,000 standard population in 2008, which was the same as in 2005, 2006 and 2007.
Over the past 20 years, SDRs have decreased for all states and territories, although New South Wales, Queensland, the Northern Territory and the Australian Capital Territory experienced slightly higher SDRs in 2008 than in 2007.
The highest standardised death rate in 2008 was in the Northern Territory (9.2 deaths per 1,000 standard population), while the lowest rates were in Victoria and the Australian Capital Territory (both 5.8).
Over the past 20 years death rates have declined for both males and females for all ages. The largest proportional decreases in male age-specific death rates over this period occurred in the 10-14 years (down 62%) and 15-19 years age groups (down 58%). For females, the 5-9 years age group experienced the largest proportional decrease (down 56%), followed by females aged 15-19 years (down 52%).