Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (2021) Health Expenditure Australia 2019-20, AIHW, Australian Government, accessed 19 May 2022.
Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. (2021). Health Expenditure Australia 2019-20. Retrieved from https://pp.aihw.gov.au/reports/health-welfare-expenditure/health-expenditure-australia-2019-20
Health Expenditure Australia 2019-20. Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, 17 December 2021, https://pp.aihw.gov.au/reports/health-welfare-expenditure/health-expenditure-australia-2019-20
Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. Health Expenditure Australia 2019-20 [Internet]. Canberra: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, 2021 [cited 2022 May. 19]. Available from: https://pp.aihw.gov.au/reports/health-welfare-expenditure/health-expenditure-australia-2019-20
Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) 2021, Health Expenditure Australia 2019-20, viewed 19 May 2022, https://pp.aihw.gov.au/reports/health-welfare-expenditure/health-expenditure-australia-2019-20
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Estimates for total health spending capture the national aggregate of all spending on health goods and services for recurrent and capital purposes.
In 2019–20, Australia spent an estimated $202.5 billion on health. In real terms, this represented a 1.8% growth in spending from 2018–19, equating to an additional $3.5 billion (Figure 1). This real growth was lower than in 2018–19 (3.1%), higher than in 2017–18 (1.4%), but below the average of the recent 5-year period (2.7%), and below the average over the decade from 2009–10 (3.4%).
The main areas in which spending increased were:
Estimated spending on some other areas declined, including:
The areas of declining spending were most likely related to the lockdowns, restrictions and temporary suspension of non-urgent elective surgery in the first half year of the COVID-19 pandemic in Australia.
The line graph shows that total health spending in both current and constant prices increased each year from 2009–10 to 2019–20. Total health spending in current prices increased from $121.3 billion in 2009–10 to $202.5 billion in 2019–20. In the same period, total health spending in constant prices increased from $145.3 billion to $202.5 billion.
Government’s COVID-19 Health Response
Following the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in late February 2020, the Australian Government entered a National Partnership Agreement — the National Partnership on COVID-19 response (NPCR) with state and territory governments. This agreement aims to provide financial assistance for the additional costs incurred by state and territory health services in responding to the COVID-19 outbreak, and efforts to minimise the spread of COVID-19 in the Australian community.
This agreement has three funding arrangements in 2019–20: (1) Hospital Services Payments, (2) State Public Health Payments, and (3) Private Hospital Financial Viability Payment.
In addition governments implemented a range of policies and programs in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including specialised testing facilities, Medicare-subsidised telehealth services, GP-led respiratory clinics, distribution of large volumes of Personal protective equipment (PPE) to health systems and increased mental health counselling.
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