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Key Statistics: Heart Disease

Statistics and information on heart disease in Australia

Key takeaways

  • Coronary heart disease is the leading cause of death in Australia
  • Heart disease represents one in five of all deaths in Australia
  • Cardiovascular disease accounts for one in four of all deaths in Australia
  • Key risk factors that contribute to heart conditions are largely preventable, including high blood pressure and high cholesterol. Additionally, most people don’t associate these key risk factors with their heart health
  • Two in three Australian adults are overweight or obese, which is among the leading risk factors for heart disease.
3 min read

Heart disease is the broad term for conditions that affect the structure and function of the heart muscle. It includes coronary heart disease, heart failure, valve disease and arrhythmias. 

Deaths1 

  • Heart disease kills one person every 18 minutes, equating to on average, 79 persons dying of heart disease every day. 

  • This accounts for nearly one in five (17.1%) of all deaths, with more males dying of heart disease than females, each year. 

  • Deaths from heart disease have been decreasing over the last 10 years. 

Hospitalisations2 

  • Someone is hospitalised for heart disease every 80 seconds, equating to a total of 1,100 people per day, on average. 

  • Forty-six per cent more men than women are hospitalised due to heart disease, with hospitalisations due to heart disease remaining relatively steady over time. 

 

References: 

1. Australian Bureau of Statistics 2020, Causes of death 2019, cat. No. 3303.0, October 

2. Australian Institute of Health and Welfare 2019, National Hospital Morbidity Database (NHMD) 

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