Burden of disease

Burden of disease analysis assesses the health impact on a population of different diseases, conditions, injuries and risk factors. The Australian Burden of Disease Study 2015 (AIHW 2019a) used information from a range of sources to quantify the fatal and non-fatal effects of these diseases.

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) accounted for almost 14% of the total burden of disease in 2015, having decreased from 15% in 2011 and 18% in 2003.

Coronary heart disease was the leading individual disease in both males and females, accounting for 6.9% of the total burden in 2015 (8.6% for males and 5.0% for females).

Stroke was ranked ninth in the leading diseases causing burden, accounting for 2.7% of total burden in 2015. It was ranked fourth in the leading causes of fatal burden.


In 2015–16, an estimated 8.9% ($10.4 billion) of total disease expenditure in the Australian health system was attributed to CVD (AIHW 2019b). Further information is available from the Disease expenditure in Australia report.


AIHW 2019a. Australian Burden of Disease Study: impact and causes of illness and death in Australia 2015. Australian Burden of Disease series no. 19. Cat. no. BOD 22. Canberra: AIHW. Viewed 15 May 2020.

AIHW 2019b. Disease expenditure in Australia. Cat no. HWE 76. Canberra: AIHW. Viewed 15 May 2020.