Notes on the data: Income support

Pensioner Concession Card holders, June 2021


Policy context:  Entitlement to an Australian Government Pensioner Concession Card (PCC) is used here as a proxy for low socioeconomic status. People who hold a PCC include those in receipt of a number of pension and benefit types, with the largest group being those who are receiving the Age Pension. Other groups include people with disabilities, carers and sole parents. As PCC cardholders have some of the lowest incomes in the population they are also likely to have poorer health. Compared with those who have social and economic advantages, disadvantaged Australians are more likely to have shorter lives, experience higher levels of disease risk factors and use fewer preventive health services [1].


  1. Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW). Australia’s health 2008. (AIHW Cat. no. AUS 99). Canberra: AIHW; 2008.

Notes:  You can get a card if you get any of the following payments:

  • Age Pension
  • Carer Payment
  • Disability Support Pension
  • JobSeeker Payment or Youth Allowance and are single, caring for a dependent child and looking for work
  • Parenting Payment single.

The data excludes details of Commonwealth Seniors Health Card holders.

Population Health Area (PHA) data were derived from already suppressed Statistical Area Level 2 (SA2) data. Therefore, if a PHA includes an SA2 with suppressed data, there could be an undercount of up to 4 people in the PHA.

State and territory totals were also provided in the source data. Data in the ‘Unknown’ data row in the Excel data workbooks are calculated from the difference between the sum of the PHA data and the State/Territory totals and include the sum of these suppressed SA2 cells.

Data cells with counts of less than five were suppressed (confidentialised).


Geography: Data available by Population Health Area, Local Government Area, Primary Health Network, Quintile of socioeconomic disadvantage of area and Remoteness Area

Numerator:  People in receipt of a Pensioner Concession Card from Centrelink


Denominator:  People aged 15 years and over


Detail of analysis:  Per cent


Source:  Compiled by PHIDU based on data from DSS Payment Demographic Data, June 2021, available from, accessed 16 August 2021, and Australian Bureau of Statistics Estimated Resident Population, 30 June 2020.

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