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. 


SA Health sought feedback from public health stakeholders, and any interested agencies or individuals, on a proposed public health indicator framework (2017) from April to July 2017. Feedback was sought on a discussion paper (PDF 550KB) and the framework, which comprised an overview and a metadata (details about what is to be measured) document.

Overall, there was consensus on the value of a South Australian public health indicator framework from the 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. Please see the August 2017 Public Consultation Feedback Summary (PDF 730KB) for more details.

SA Public Health Indicator Framework

The updated framework (2018) comprises:

Next steps

Data sources for a small number of indicators have not been identified. These indicators have been retained in the framework and it has been noted that these “Require further advice”. In addition, changes within the health system and for some data sources are anticipated to occur in 2018. Indicators which may be affected by these changes have been identified in the framework with the annotation “To be reviewed in 2019”.

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.