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Australians Live Longer – New Statistics


Monday, 21st January 2002 at 12:01 pm
Staff Reporter
New figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics show the life expectancy of an Australian baby born today is at an all time high of 77 years for males and 82 years for females.

Monday, 21st January 2002
at 12:01 pm
Staff Reporter


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Australians Live Longer – New Statistics
Monday, 21st January 2002 at 12:01 pm

New figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics show that a reduced overall rate of deaths from cancer and heart disease have helped push the life expectancy of an Australian baby born today to an all time high of 77 years for males and 82 years for females.

For the community as a whole, the death rate in 2000 has fallen by 3% since
1999 and by 34% since 1980. The increase of life expectancy at birth to 77 years for males and 82 years for females is 6 years higher for males and 4 years higher for females than in 1980.

The comparative life expectancy for Indigenous Australians is 56 years for males and 63 years for females.

Of the 128,300 deaths registered in 2000, cancer and heart disease accounted for almost half (28% and 21% respectively) of the total. Over the last ten years the death rate due to heart disease has declined by 39%.

ABS figures show that since 1990, the overall death rate due to cancer declined by 10%, reflecting the similar sized decreases in the two leading cancers, cancer of the digestive organs and cancer of the trachea, bronchus and lung. Although cancer of the trachea, bronchus and lung declined by 10% in this period, the male rate declined by 20% while the female rate increased by 14%.

Suicides accounted for just under 2% of all deaths in 2000, with 2,360 suicide deaths, down 5% from the 1999 level. The rate of suicide in 2000 was similar to the level in 1990, with the male rate around four times higher than the female rate throughout the decade. Suicide death rates were highest among the 25-34 and 35-44 year age groups.

Life expectancy at birth for males and females varied across the regions of Australia by up to 11 years. Male life expectancy at birth was highest in Canberra (79 years) followed by Outer Adelaide, Melbourne and Perth (each 78 years). Female life expectancy was highest at 83 years in Lower Great Southern (Western Australia), Midlands (Western Australia), Perth (Western Australia) and Moreton (Queensland). Both male and female life expectancy were lowest in the Northern Territory outside Darwin (69 years and 73 years respectively) and the Kimberley (69 years and 76 years).

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