RHD among all Australians

As at 31 December 2017, there were 4,255 (45 per 100,000 population) living persons with RHD recorded on state and territory registers. Eighty–seven per cent were Indigenous Australians (3,687 diagnoses). The NT had the highest rate of prevalent RHD diagnoses (793 per 100,000 population, 1,951 diagnoses), while SA had the lowest (11 per 100,000 population, 181 diagnoses). 

Table 1: Prevalence of RHD, by Indigenous status and state and territory, 31 December 2017

State and territory 

Indigenous (number)

Indigenous rate (per 100,000)

Non-Indigenous (number)

Non-Indigenous rate (per 100,000)

Total
(number)(a)

Total rate (per 100,000)(a)

Qld

1,160

531.0

331

7.0

1,569

31.8

WA

522

523.6

32

1.3

554

21.5

SA

161

379.7

20

1.2

181

10.5

NT 

1,844

2,436.2

107

62.8

1,951

792.8

Total

3,687

845.2

490

5.4

4,255

44.0

  1. Totals include 78 diagnoses with unknown Indigenous status.

Notes

  1. For NT, RHD diagnoses have been recorded in a Register since 1997. Registers began in 2009 in Qld, in 2009 in WA and in 2012 in SA.
  2. Rates are crude rates per 100,000 population.   

Source: AIHW analysis of National Rheumatic Heart Disease data collection.

There were almost twice as many females living with RHD (2,783 diagnoses, 58 per 100,000 population) than males (1,470 diagnoses, 31 per 100,000 population) as at 31 December 2017.

Table 2: Prevalence of RHD, by age and sex, 31 December 2017

Age group (years)

Males
(number)

Males
(rate per 100,000)

Females (number)

Females
(rate per 100,000)

Total
(number)

Total
(rate per  100,000)

5–14

167

26.8

220

37.1

387

31.8

15–24

424

67.3

517

85.8

941

76.4

25–34

309

44.7

610

88.1

919

66.4

35–44 

227

36.4

529

84.4

756

60.5

45 and over

343

18.7

907

46.5

1,250

33.0

Total

1,470

31.2

2,783

58.4

4,255

44.9

Notes

  1. The grand total number includes 2 diagnoses with age not stated.
  2. Rates are crude rates per 100,000 population.

Source: AIHW analysis of National Rheumatic Heart Disease data collection.

The majority of people had mild RHD (42%, 1,766 diagnoses), followed by severe RHD (31%, 1,312 diagnoses).