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What is the Life Expectancy in Australia?

Life expectancy is an important measure to understand when assessing the quality of a country’s social and economic conditions. Life expectancy can be measured from birth, childhood, or adolescence and is different for each measurement period.


How Long Can I Expect to Live?

According to The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, the average life expectancy in Australia is now about ten years longer than it was in the 1950s. Children who are born today can expect to live even longer than this.

In the late 1800s, an Australian boy was expected to live to just 51.1 years old. Today if you are born, you are expected to live to 80.9, or if you’re a female, you would be likely to reach 85 years old. Life expectancy in Australia is much higher than it once was. This can be attributed to many things, including advancements in medicine, better knowledge of health, and earlier detection of illness and disease. 

Through the years1

Life Expectancy for Aboriginal for Torres Strait Islander Peoples

Aboriginal people have a lower life expectancy than non-indigenous Australians. Aboriginal people are at risk for health problems that put them in danger of early death, including acute rheumatic fever and rheumatic heart disease. This means that they are likely to live 8.6 years less than a non-indigenous Australian. 

Life expectancy for Indigenous Australians has increased, though, and there is hope that it will continue to do so.

Life Expectancy Infographic

How do we Compare to the Rest of the World? 

Australia has one of the highest life expectancies in the world. Although we rank below countries such as Singapore, Japan, and Switzerland, we remain a leader in the global list. With an average lifespan of 84.63 years old, Japan has the highest life expectancy in the world.

The average life expectancy for females and males in Australia is 85.54 and 81.49, respectively, making it the 6th longest life expectancy on the world’s top 10 list. The average world population sits at 75.6 years of life expectancy for females and 70.8 years for males, with an average combined life expectancy of 73.2 years across all genders and countries globally.

How do they Calculate Life Expectancy?

A life table is calculated with the aid of a statistical method that takes into account the death patterns of the population. This method assumes that current death rates will persist throughout a person’s life. The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) publishes life tables and calculates the life expectancy for the population.

Data from three years of life expectancy is collated to ensure a higher level of accuracy. Differences in life expectancy are most notable when certain conditions change, for example, infectious disease outbreaks such as the Spanish Flu in the 1920s.

What can I do to Ensure a Longer Life Expectancy?

Unfortunately, living a long life is never certain. Accidents and illnesses can occur with no notice, and sometimes we have no control. 

This being said, there are steps you can take to ensure that can help if you find yourself in an emergency situation. Taking a First Aid course and learning vital CPR and response techniques can help you assist people in need and yourself.