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AIHW deaths data shows value of preventive care


Amanda Lyons


18/07/2018 3:30:33 PM

The latest deaths data from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare shows the value of preventive healthcare.

The latest data on death rates in Australia show the importance of preventive healthcare.
The latest data on death rates in Australia show the importance of preventive healthcare.

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) today released its updated report on deaths in Australia, which includes information from data collected in 2016.
 
The Deaths in Australia report states that the data shows a ‘long and continuing decline of death rates in Australia’ and records a concomitant rise in life expectancy that is reflected by an increase in the median ages of death, which reached 78 years for males and 84 years for females in 2016.
 
Gaps between males and females in life expectancy and death rates are also continuing to close, and according to the AIHW report, this development has been influenced by several factors including ‘modifications to lifestyle factors such as smoking, diet and high blood pressure’.
 
There is also good news in terms of potentially avoidable death rates, a definition that includes deaths that can be potentially prevented by screening and primary preventive care. Rates of death in this category have fallen by 45% between 1997 and 2016, from 193 to 105 deaths per 100,000 population.
 
However, the statistics also reveal there is further work to do in this area, as 50% of deaths among people aged less than 75 were potentially avoidable. Additionally, out of the five leading causes of death – heart disease, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, cerebrovascular disease, lung cancer and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease – four are measurably preventable by monitoring and alteration of lifestyle factors.



AIHW Australian Institute of Health and Welfare death rates Preventive healthcare





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