Notes on the data: Premature mortality by selected cause - 0 to 74 years

Deaths from external causes, persons aged 0 to 74 years, 2014 to 2018

 

Policy context:  Deaths from external causes, commonly described as deaths from accidents and injury, are deaths caused by environmental events and circumstances that are external to the body. External causes of death can be classified as 'unintentional', such as transport accidents (the largest number in this category), falls, and accidental drowning or poisoning; 'intentional', such as suicides (the largest number in this category) and homicides; and those which occur due to the complications of medical and surgical care (commonly referred to as 'adverse events') [1].

Deaths from external causes as a proportion of all deaths vary between age groups. Males are more likely to die prematurely from external causes than females: in 2014 to 2018, two-thirds of the total number of deaths were males – details here. The difference was most notable in the 20 to 24 year age group (in which 1,998 males died from external causes compared to 540 females) [2]. There are concerns regarding the quality of data on suicides, some of which may have been counted as deaths from other accidental, ill-defined or unspecified causes rather than suicide; and numbers are subject to revision as coronial enquires are completed – in this data set only the data for 2014, 2015 and 2016 are classified as ‘final’, with data from 2017 and 2018 subject to revision.

For 2014 to 2018, almost two thirds (64.1%) of all deaths from external causes were premature – 73.8% for males and 47.2% for females: details here.

The indicator Potential Years of Life Lost adds a further dimension to the data on premature deaths, in particular from these causes, as they include deaths of many young people.

Reference

  1. Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS). Causes of death, Australia, 2007. (ABS Cat. no. 3303.0). Canberra: ABS; 2009.
  2. PHIDU, Cause of Death Unit Record Files supplied by the Australian Coordinating Registry and the Victorian Department of Justice, on behalf of the Registries of Births, Deaths and Marriages and the National Coronial Information System; 2014-2018.
 

Notes:  International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems 10th Revision (ICD-10) codes: V01-Y98

For deaths data released since 2007, the ABS has applied a staged approach to the coding of cause of death which affects the number of records available for release at any date. In each release, the latest year’s data is preliminary, the second latest is revised and the data for the remaining years is final. For further information about the ABS revisions process see the following and related sites: http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/Lookup/3303.0Explanatory+Notes12012.

 

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

Numerator:  Deaths from external causes at ages 0 to 74 years

 

Denominator:  Population aged 0 to 74 years

 

Detail of analysis:  Average annual indirectly age-standardised rate per 100,000 population (aged 0 to 74 years); and/or indirectly age-standardised ratio, based on the Australian standard.

 

Source:  Data compiled by PHIDU from deaths data based on the 2014 to 2018 Cause of Death Unit Record Files supplied by the Australian Coordinating Registry and the Victorian Department of Justice, on behalf of the Registries of Births, Deaths and Marriages and the National Coronial Information System. The population is the ABS Estimated Resident Population (ERP) for Australia, 30 June 2014 to 30 June 2018.

 

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