Thursday, 25 May 2017

National Strategic Framework for Chronic Conditions

The National Strategic Framework for Chronic Conditions (the Framework) is the overarching policy document for chronic conditions that sets the directions and outcomes to achieve its Vision that "all Australians live healthier lives through effective prevention and management of chronic conditions."

The Framework provides guidance for the development and implementation of policies, strategies, actions and services to reduce the impact of chronic conditions in Australia. It supersedes the National Chronic Disease Strategy 2005<> and associated National Service Improvement Frameworks<>.

The Framework moves away from a disease-specific approach and provides national direction applicable to a broad range of chronic conditions by recognising that there are often similar underlying principles for the prevention and management of many chronic conditions. The Framework will better cater for shared health determinants, risk factors and multimorbidities across a broad range of chronic conditions

PDF version: PDF version: National Strategic Framework for Chronic Conditions - PDF 4.1 MB<$File/National%20Strategic%20Framework%20for%20Chronic%20Conditions.pdf>
Word version: National Strategic Framework for Chronic Conditions - Word 2.3 <$File/National%20Strategic%20Framework%20for%20Chronic%20Conditions.docx>

Wednesday, 17 May 2017

Admitted patient care 2015-16: Australian hospital statistics [AIHW]

In 2015-16, there were about 10.6 million separations in Australia's public and private hospitals-about 59% occurred in public hospitals. There were 30 million days of patient care reported for admitted patients-20.2 million in public hospitals and 9.7 million in private hospitals.

Between 2011-12 and 2015-16:

* the number of separations rose by 3.5% on average each year.

* the number of public patient separations rose by an average of 2.9% each year, compared with 5.5% per year for separations paid for by private health insurance.

* the median waiting time for elective surgery for public patients in a public hospital was 42 days, while it was 20 days for patients who used private health insurance to fund all or part of their admission.

Media release: Hospital admissions growing steadily, more Australians going private in hospitals<>

Download report: Admitted patient care 2015-16: Australian hospital statistics<>

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

League legends take mental fitness to the country

In association with the Act-Belong-Commit, Rugby League legends Wayne Wigham and Percy Knight will be taking their message about mental health to country NSW.

 When Rugby League great Wayne Wigham opened up publicly about his experience with depression, he made his message clear - mental illness can affect anyone even if it doesn’t show it on the surface.After seven years working in the Black Dog Institute Education Team, he is gearing up to take his message to communities and schools in country NSW in association with the Act-Belong-Commit initiative.

See more at:

Friday, 12 May 2017

Expanding medicare-supported treatment for eating disorder patients

People with eating disorders may soon have access to more than 10 Medicare supported psychological treatment sessions each year, thanks to a recommendation made by Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt.The minister said the system needed to do more to respond to complex mental illnesses such as anorexia which has the highest associated rate of suicide of any mental illness.

Mr Hunt recommended the Medicare review committee look at ways to extend the support to those dealing with the complex mental health disorders.

University of Canberra clinical psychologist Dr Vivienne Lewis, an eating disorder specialist, said even though prevalence was high in adolescents these conditions should not overlooked as byproduct of tumultuous teen years.

See more at:

Mental health funding in the 2017 budget is too little, unfair and lacks a coherent strategy

This week’s federal budget allocated A$115 million in new funding over four years. This is one of the smallest investments in the sector in recent years.For instance, the Council of Australian Governments (CoAG) added more than $5.5 billion to mental health spending in 2006. The 2011-12 federal budget provided $2.2 billion in new funding.

This compounds a situation in which, in 2014-15, mental health received around 5.25% of the overall health budget while representing 12% of the total burden of disease. There is no reason those figures should exactly match, but the gap is large and revealing.

See more at:

Monday, 8 May 2017

Aboriginal identification in hospitals: quality improvement program

The Aboriginal identification in hospitals: quality improvement program report aims to improve the cultural competence of staff in NSW hospital Emergency Departments (EDs), improve the identification of Aboriginality in NSW hospital EDs, and reduce the proportion of Aborigonal patients who have an incomplete emergency attendance.

Aboriginal health in Aboriginal hands : community-controlled comprehensive primary health care

Comprehensive primary health care (PHC)—which focuses on the whole patient, not simply a disease state—has been the global 'gold standard' for addressing community health problems since the 1970s, including in Australia. Ideals are rarely put to the test, however.

In 2010 the National Health and Medical Research Centre (NH&MRC) funded the Southgate Institute for Health, Society and Equity at Flinders University to investigate how well community health services in South Australia are conforming to the principles of comprehensive PHC and the reasons for their success or otherwise.

6 community health services were selected for intensive study over several years: 5 in South Australia and 1 in Alice Springs in the Northern Territory. Of these 6, the Central Australian Aboriginal Congress ('Congress') in Alice Springs, best embodied the principles of comprehensive PHC—by a long way.

To read more go to the full report : Aboriginal health in Aboriginal hands : community-controlled comprehensive primary health care.

Thursday, 27 April 2017

Clinical governance for Primary Health Networks

Responding to the needs of people who are most at risk of poor health outcomes is a priority for governments and communities across Australia. While definitions vary, there is widespread agreement in the literature that the commissioning of health services is more than traditional planning, funding and procurement. It is the process for deciding how to use the total health resources available in order to improve outcomes in the most efficient, effective, equitable and sustainable way.

This issues brief from the Deeble Institute for Health Policy Research, sets out the rationale for developing and implementing a clinical governance framework for Primary Health Networks (PHNs) in commissioning the provision of primary health services that are safe and effective. It provides principles that inform clinical governance policy including recommendations on how clinical governance should be supported in commissioning undertaken by PHNs for contract development, management, auditing and compliance. PHNs also have a role in influencing the uptake of quality improvement activities in general practice including the interface between primary care and community services.

The critical areas in ensuring clinical governance are:

* Consumers having opportunities to manage their own health and also participate in innovation and value creation through co-design processes.
* Clinician-led workforce that enables PHNs to make informed decisions about commissioning health services with providers who have the appropriate capacity and expertise to deliver safe care.
* Delivery of safe quality care through identifying areas for practice improvement and those practices that may put consumers at risk of harm,and making recommendations to prevent or control those risks.
* Clinical risk management to ensure that service providers have the capacity to meet legislative requirements and national and jurisdictional standards when designing best practice for their service.

Thursday, 20 April 2017

Alcohol and other drug treatment services in Australia, 2015-16: key findings [AIHW]

In 2015-16, around 796 alcohol and other drug treatment services provided just over 206,000 treatment episodes to an estimated 133,000 clients.

* The top 4 drugs that led clients to seek treatment were alcohol (32% of treatment episodes), cannabis (23%), amphetamines (23%) and heroin (6%).
* The proportion of episodes where clients were receiving treatment for amphetamines has continued to increase over the last 10 years, from 12% of treatment episodes in 2006-07 to 23% in 2015-16.
* The median age of clients in AOD treatment services is increasing, 33 years in 2015-16, up from 31 in 2006-07.

Download web report: Alcohol and other drug treatment services in Australia, 2015-16: key findings

Infographic: Alcohol & Other Drug Treatment Services 2015-16

Wednesday, 19 April 2017

5 new AIHW Injuries publications

Hospitalised assault injuries among women and girls fact sheet

Key findings:
* Rates of assault among women were highest for those aged between 15-19 and 50-54.
* Over half (59%) of all these women were assaulted by bodily force, and for assaults by bodily force and involving sharp and blunt objects, the majority of injuries were to the head and neck (63%).
* Where information about the perpetrator was available, a spouse or domestic partner was the most commonly reported perpetrator (in 59% of cases).

Media release: Domestic violence leading cause of hospitalised assault among girls and women

Dog-related injuries fact sheet

Firearm injuries and deaths fact sheet

DIY injuries fact sheet

Serious unintentional injury involving a railway train or tram, Australia, 2009-10 to 2013-14 report

Thursday, 13 April 2017

Impact of overweight and obesity as a risk factor for chronic conditions [AIHW]

Impact of overweight and obesity as a risk factor for chronic conditions updates and extends estimates of the burden due to overweight and obesity reported in the Australian Burden of Disease Study 2011 to include burden in people aged under 25, revised diseases linked to overweight and obesity based on the latest evidence, and estimates by socioeconomic group.

* The report includes scenario modelling, undertaken to assess the potential impact on future health burden if overweight and obesity in the population continues to rise or is reduced.

* The enhanced analysis in the report shows that 7.0% of the total health burden in Australia in 2011 is due to overweight and obesity, and that this burden increased with increasing level of socioeconomic disadvantage.

Download report: Impact of overweight and obesity as a risk factor for chronic conditions

Media release: Small changes in our weight could significantly reduce health impact of obesity.

Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Early childhood the key to improving Indigenous health

A major study into the health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children has found programs and policies to promote healthy weight should target children as young as three.

Lead researcher Katie Thurber from the Australian National University said the majority of Indigenous children in the national study had a healthy Body Mass Index, but around 40% were classified as overweight or obese by the time they reached 9 years of age.

Deeble issues brief on overweight and obesity among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children

Wednesday, 29 March 2017

Incidence of insulin-treated diabetes in Australia, 2015 [AIHW]

This fact sheet by the Australian Institute of Health & Welfare provides the latest available national data on new cases of insulin-treated diabetes in Australia.

It shows that in 2015 there were 28,775 people who began using insulin to treat their diabetes in Australia-63% had type 2 diabetes, 26% had gestational diabetes, 9% had type 1 diabetes and 2% had other forms of diabetes or their diabetes status was unknown.

The fact sheet is accompanied by a dynamic data display, which provides data on insulin-treated diabetes by age at first insulin use, Indigenous status, remoteness, SEIFA and state/territory.

Download report: Incidence of insulin-treated diabetes in Australia, 2015

Download dynamic data display: Incidence of insulin-treated diabetes in Australia dynamic data display

Monday, 6 March 2017

Oral health of Australian children: the National Child Oral Health Study 2012–14

Despite some improvement, child oral health has remained a significant population health issue in Australia in the 21st Century. The evidence described in this report has pointed to substantial social patterning of oral health status, dental service use and dental and general health behaviours among Australian children. The identification of the numerous factors and the relation between them at an individual child, family, school and community level poses both difficulties and opportunities for programs to make improvements to and reduce social inequalities in child oral health.

Oral health of Australian children: the National Child Oral Health Study 2012–14.

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