Medications dispensed to contemporary ex-serving ADF members in 2017–18
This section describes the contemporary ex-serving population and its characteristics, as well as how these characteristics may affect medication dispensing for this population.
The contemporary ex-serving population
The contemporary ex-serving ADF population, is made up of all ADF personnel with at least one day of service since 1 January 2001, who were discharged after this date and prior to 1 July 2017.
As such, the contemporary population is a subset of the broader ex-serving population and has some distinct characteristics, most notably, it is a relatively young population, and has a smaller proportion of women compared with the Australian population (Figure 1).
For medication dispensing, this has the potential to affect the results between these two populations, as certain medications can be sex-specific, or are prescribed in the treatment and management of health conditions that occur more commonly in older age groups. Therefore, results have been disaggregated by age and sex in the data visualisations that accompany this report, as well as in the supplementary tables. Age and sex standardisation is used wherever comparisons are made between the contemporary ex-serving population and the whole Australian population to account for the differences. See Introduction for details on how this population have been determined.
Figure 1: Age and sex of the Contemporary ex-serving population in 2017–18 and the Australian population on 31 December 2017 (per cent)
Sources: AIHW analysis of linked PMKeYS dataset, 2017–18 (Contemporary ex-serving population); ABS Estimated Resident Population aged 17 and over as at 31 December 2017 (Australian population).
The contemporary ex-serving population and sub-populations
The contemporary ex-serving population itself is not a homogenous population. Within the contemporary ex-serving population, three sub-populations or cohorts, have been created for analysis in this report: DVA cardholders; Concession cardholders; and, General beneficiaries. See Scope of analysis and Technical notes for details on how these cohorts have been determined.
Figure 2 below highlights the different age and sex structures of the three different cohorts analysed in this report. All cohorts had relatively few women, DVA cardholders were relatively evenly distributed with regards to age, while concession cardholders had a bimodal distribution with a large proportion aged 30–39 and 65–69 and general beneficiaries a younger distribution with regards to age.
The age distribution of the DVA cardholder cohort reflects the requirements associated with gaining a DVA card which include age, illness and particular service experience. The bimodal distribution of the concession cardholder population reflects these members having either age-based cards (such as pension cards), or income-based cards (such as a health care card).
Figure 2: Age and sex of the contemporary ex-serving cohorts in 2017–18 (per cent)
Source: AIHW analysis of linked PMKeyS–PBS/RPBS data 2017–18.