Chronic disease and associated risk factors information monitoring systems: the results of an audit of Australian data collections and policies and a review of the international experience
This report presents an overview of the audit phase of the Feasibility Study for Developing a National-wide Chronic Disease and Associated Risk Factors Information and Monitoring System, and is based on the further development and integration of a number of documents prepared in that phase. It details the Australian situation from the audit of policy and data collections, including the result of a consultation with policy makers on the utility of existing information resources; and reviews a range of international experiences and the importance of a mix of strategies. Information gaps in Australian collections are identified against a monitoring framework based on the chronic diseases considered a national priority in Australia and the risk factors and determinants recognised as associated with those diseases. Finally, the report identifies a four strategy approach for creating better time series information on chronic diseases and associated risk factors and determinants, and to draw together a range of activities and developments in public health information in Australia.
Background: In late 2000, the then Commonwealth Department of Health and Aged Care awarded a tender for the conduct of a feasibility study to investigate the development of a nation-wide behavioural risk factor surveillance system. The system was to encompass data collection, analysis, and reporting, on chronic diseases and associated risk factors, as a basis for policy and intervention developments. The study was constructed in four phases: (1) and (2) an analysis and audit of existing chronic disease and associated risk factor data collections, monitoring and surveillance policies and practices; (3) a feasibility study on the development of a nation-wide chronic disease and associated risk factor surveillance system through the coordination and harmonisation of approaches across all jurisdictions; and (4) a feasibility study on the development of supplementary surveillance systems focussing on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and on remote regions. The project reports address these different phases of the project.
Prepared by Jeanette Pope and Su Gruszin after the Audit phase of the feasibility study for developing a nation-wide chronic disease and associated risk factors information and monitoring system.