LEADING CAUSES OF DEATH IN AUSTRALIA IN 2016
ISCHAEMIC HEART DISEASE
Ischaemic heart disease remained the nation’s top killer, with 12 per cent of all deaths at an average age of 85.1 years.
It killed 19,077 people, down from 19,777 in 2015.
Death rates from ischaemic heart disease have been declining for more than 40 years yet remains the leading cause of death. Since 2007, the death rate has decreased by more than one-third.
2. DEMENTIA, INCLUDING ALZHEIMER’S
In 2016 there were 13,126 deaths from dementia, equal to 8.3 per cent of all deaths. The average age was 88.8 years old.
In the past decade, the mortality rate for dementia has increased by the biggest margin compared with the other leading causes of death.
It’s now the leading cause of death for Australian women and is the third leading cause of death for men.
3. CEREBROVASCULAR DISEASES
Cerebrovascular diseases, most commonly strokes, were responsible for 6.6 per cent of all deaths. The number dropped slightly to 10,451 from 10,869 and the average age was 86.3 years old.
4. TRACHEA, BRONCHUS AND LUNG CANCER
These cancers killed 8,410 Australians last year, equal to 5.3 per cent of all deaths, with an average age of 74.
The number of deaths increased from 8,117 the previous year.
5. CHRONIC LOWER RESPIRATORY DISEASES
Chronic lower respiratory diseases led to the death of 8,048 people, up from 7,991. This equates to 5.1 per cent of all deaths with an average age of 81.7.
* Top five for men: ischaemic heart diseases, trachea, bronchus and lung cancer, dementia, cerebrovascular diseases and chronic lower respiratory diseases
* Top five for women: dementia, ischaemic heart disease, cerebrovascular diseases, chronic lower respiratory diseases and trachea, bronchus and lung cancer
* The top five causes overall did not change from the previous year and accounted for 37.3 per cent of all deaths.
* Bowel cancer took over diabetes to become the sixth leading cause of death
* Infant mortality rates decreased by 2.1 per cent from the year before to 970 deaths
* Suicide rates declined but it was the leading cause of death for Australians aged 15-44
* The Northern Territory had the highest death rate followed by Tasmania and the ACT had the lowest
* Death rates from illicit drugs increased, with deaths from psychostimulants, including methamphetamine, quadrupling since 1999
* There were 158,504 deaths overall: 81,867 males and 76,637 females.