The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare’s Geographical analysis of hospitalised injury and injury deaths in 2017-18 tool provides an interactive insight into the counts and rates of injury hospitalisations and deaths by the remoteness of individuals residences.
Given the high proportion of Australians that reside in major cities, it is no surprise that the largest number of injuries in 2017-18 occurred among these residents (350,000 hospitalisations and 8,300 deaths).
However, when taking into account population size it was residents in the very remote regions of Australia that experienced the highest rate of injury hospitalisations and deaths, at more than double the rate of residents in major cities in 2017-18.
When narrowing in on Western Australia data, a similar story is evident. As depicted in Figure 1 below, the rates of hospitalised injury in WA increased with increasing remoteness of the individuals’ usual residence. However, the same linear pattern was not evident among injury deaths, as the highest rate of injury deaths in WA in 2017-18 were to residents in inner regional and outer regional areas, see Figure 2.
In regards to the injury topics that were contributing to the higher rate of injury within regional locations, similar to the national data it was transport crashes and assaults that were significantly overrepresented in remote locations across the state.
In WA in 2017/18 the assault hospitalisation rate was 12 times higher for residents in very remote areas compared to major cities and the rate of transport-related fatalities was more than double that of major cities.