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Welcome to the Department of Health 2018-19 Annual Report

Australia’s Health System is world-class, supported by universal and affordable access to high quality medical, pharmaceutical and hospital services, while helping people to stay healthy through health promotion and disease prevention activities.

The health system touches every individual from cradle to grave. It is a complex landscape with many interdependencies, and many stakeholders. The Department’s focus on improving health outcomes for all Australians requires us to work with all stakeholders as partners in driving health reform.

The Department of Health 2018-19 Annual Report provides a transparent account to the public and Parliament of the activities our department has undertaken during the 2018-19 financial year. We report against our planned outcomes and performance expectations as outlined in the 2018-19 Health Portfolio Budget Statements, we provide readers with financial and performance information about the work our department undertakes to contribute to our world-class health system for now and future generations.

Our purpose is to support government and stakeholders to lead and shape Australia’s health and aged care system and sporting outcomes through evidence-based policy, well targeted programs and best practice regulation.

We have a diverse set of responsibilities, including effective delivery of the Government’s priorities and reforms, providing evidence-based advice, supporting scientific research, evaluation, regulation and compliance.

 7,100 general practices, 4,730 pharmacies – Footnote 1. Hospital Funding has grown from $13.3 billion in 2012-13 to $21.7 billion in 2018-19 – Footnote 2. 1,782 people accessed organ transplants in Australia – Footnote 3. 796,000 clients received hearing services through the Hearing Services Program – Footnote 4. The Government announced an additional $2.8 billion for PBS medicines – Footnote 5. There are 31 Primary Health Networks across Australia – Footnote 6. Over 86 out of every 100 visits to the GP are free – Footnote 7. Over 800,000 prescriptions, on average, are filled every day under the PBS – Footnote 8. A record number (0ver 7,000) of industrial chemical importers and manufacturers were registered with the NICNAS – Footnote 9. Eligible patients pay no more than $40.30 for PBS medicines, or no more than $6.50 if they hold a concession card – Footnote 10. Almost half of all Australians aged 16–85 will experience mental illness in their life – Footnote 11.

  1. Australian Digital Health Agency (2019), My Health Record, My Health Record Statistics May 2019, www.myhealthrecord.gov.au/sites/default/files/my_health_record_dashboard_-_26_may_2019.pdf?v=1561352401
  2. Department of Health, Health Funding Facts - Hospital Funding, www.health.gov.au/resources/apps-and-tools/health-funding-facts/health-funding-facts
  3. Organ and Tissue Authority (2019), Facts and statistics, www.donatelife.gov.au/about-donation/get-facts/facts-and-statistics
  4. Department of Health 2018-19 Annual Report, Refer Outcome 4 - Individual Health Benefits, p.83
  5. Department of Health 2018-19 Annual Report, Refer Outcome 4 - Individual Health Benefits, p.78
  6. Department of Health (2015), 31 Primary Health Networks. Boundaries - September 2015, www1.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/Content/03F3D39E5C44403DCA257FB000095CA8/$File/phnNatSep15.pdf
  7. Department of Health, Minister Hunt’s Media, Medicare bulk billing at record level, www.health.gov.au/ministers/the-hon-greg-hunt-mp/media/medicare-bulk-billing-at-record-level
  8. Department of Health, Australia’s Long Term National Health Plan to build the world’s best health system (2019), www.health.gov.au/sites/default/files/australia-s-long-term-national-health-plan_0.pdf
  9. Department of Health 2018-19 Annual Report, refer Appendix 3 - Report on the operation of the Industrial Chemicals (Notification and Assessment) Act 1989 for 2018-19, p.291
  10. Department of Health (2019), Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, Fees, Patient Contributions and Safety Net Thresholds, www.pbs.gov.au/info/healthpro/explanatory-notes/front/fee
  11. Department of Health, Mental Health, www.health.gov.au/health-topics/mental-health

About this Report

Department of Health Annual Report 2018-19

ISSN: 2204-5716 (Print)
ISSN: 2204-5724 (Online)

Publications approval number: 12502


© 2019 Commonwealth of Australia as represented by the Department of Health

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Contact Information

If you would like to comment on this Annual Report, or have any queries, please contact the Editor at:

The Editor
Annual Report 2018-19
Australian Government Department of Health MDP 51
GPO Box 9848

Phone: +61 2 6289 7181
Email: annrep [at] health.gov.au

This Annual Report is available online at:

Further information about the Department of Health is also available online at: www.health.gov.au

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