Health spending per person
Taking into account population size and growth, average per capita spending on health in 2020–21 was $8,617. In real terms, this was $533 (6.6%) more per person than in 2019–20 (Figure 2a). The growth in per capita spending in 2020–21 was higher than the average yearly increase over the decade to 2020–21 (1.9%) and higher than might have been expected based on the background trend (between 2008–09 and 2018–19) (Figure 2b). This increased per person rate is partly explained by the impact of international border closures on overseas migration, which resulted in Australia's population growth slowing (see ABS 2021d).
Figure 2a: Average total health spending per person(a), and annual growth rate, constant prices(b), 2010–11 to 2020–21
The line graph shows that average total health spending per person in constant prices increased from $7,152 in 2010–11 to $7,469 in 2011–12 before decreasing to $7,442 in 2012–13. It then increased again to $8,617 in 2020–21. Annual growth rate in average total health spending per person ranged from –0.4 per cent and 6.6 per cent between 2010–11 and 2020–21. Annual growth rate in 2020–21 was 6.6 per cent, higher than the average annual growth rate in the last 5-year period.
Figure 2b: Real health spending per person during pandemic-affected years compared to the trend of the previous decade
The line graph shows the average total health spending per person, in the two years during the COVID-19 pandemic (2019–20 to 2020–21) compared to the trend of the previous 10-year period (2008–09 to 2018–19). Assuming the average growth rate for the previous 10-year period remains the same for 2019–20 and 2020–21, the trend amounts of average total health spending per person in constant prices for 2019–20 and 2020–21 were $8,242, $8,400, respectively. While the actual amounts for these years were $8,085 and $8,617, respectively.