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Public Health Indicators

The South Australian Public Health Act (2011) (the Act) was enacted to promote and to provide for the protection of the health of the public of South Australia and to reduce the incidence of preventable illness, injury and disability. It is part of a range of public health legislation designed to protect and promote the health of South Australians.

Section 50 of the Act requires the development of a state public health plan and the first State Public Health Plan was released in 2013.This plan requires the development of “a coherent dataset of public health indicators (which are meaningful and relevant to Local Government and Public Health Partner Authorities) to aid in public health planning, monitoring and evaluation, and for the development of an evidence base for effective public health intervention” .

In addition, Section 23 of the Act states that the: “Chief Public Health Officer is required to prepare a written report every 2 years about … public health trends, activities and indicators in South Australia…” For the current and previous reports visit the Chief Public Health Officer’s Report page

Proposed South Australian Public Health Indicator Framework

SA Health sought feedback from public health stakeholders, and any interested agencies or individuals, on a proposed public health indicator framework. The consultation was open from
28 April 2017 to 2 June 2017.Feedback was sought on:

  • a discussion paper (PDF 550KB) which was developed to provide background on the purpose, scope and challenges associated with the development of the public health indicator framework

and the framework, which has two components:

Summary of feedback

Feedback from a public consultation on the proposed South Australian public health indicator framework was received across April to mid July 2017. Overall, there was consensus on the value of a South Australian public health indicator framework from the 26 respondents. There was considerable interest in the use of the indicator framework in the future and the potential for the indicators, and related data, to assist with public health planning and action. As would be expected, the feedback reflected the needs and areas of interest of the respondents.

Following the feedback, it is recommended that the purpose, scope and structure of the framework be maintained as proposed. Most of the metadata will remain as proposed, with some amendments intended for completion by October 2017. Some key amendments may include options to provide more indicators or measures relating to rural areas of South Australia and the inclusion of indicators relating to domestic/family violence, child protection and sun protection. There will also be consideration of how to identify those indicators relating to climate change and ‘wellbeing’.

Please see the Public Consultation Feedback Summary- August 2017 (PDF 730KB) for more details.

Next Steps

It is anticipated that an amended framework will be publicly released in October 2017 at: www.sahealth.sa.gov.au/publichealthindicators. It is possible that some indicators will still “require further advice” at this time.

The public health indicators framework will be reviewed formally in early 2019 following the development of the 2016-18 Chief Public Health Officer’s Report.

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