Michael Ferguson,Minister for Health
The Director of Public Health’s State of Public Health 2018 report identifies some promising signs for Tasmania’s health, but notes there is still lots of work to do.
The Hodgman Liberal Government is committed to supporting Tasmanians to lead healthy lifestyles, reduce tobacco use, improve our diets and increase physical activity.
We know Tasmania faces a number challenges, including the age structure of our population and the socioeconomic, educational, housing and employment conditions that influence health and wellbeing.
Focusing on primary prevention is one of the Government’s key strategies for a sustainable healthcare system and is a crucial part of Healthy Tasmania.
The report provides examples of activities that address priorities of our Healthy Tasmania Strategic Plan, such as smoking, healthy eating and physical activity, community connections and chronic conditions.
These case studies show innovation and collaboration between communities, government departments, local government, business, non-government organisations and research bodies to improve the health and wellbeing of Tasmanians.
Some key findings in the report include:
- More than 80 per cent of Tasmanians rate their health as good to excellent.
- Life expectancy at birth has reached 83 years for females and 79 years for males.
- Teenage pregnancy has declined.
- Nearly 95 per cent of Tasmanian children are fully immunised by five years old.
However, overall, Tasmania still ranks poorly compared with other Australian states and territories and poor diet is widespread throughout life, physical activity is insufficient, and obesity is a significant issue.
Our $8.6 million Healthy Tasmania Strategic Plan is focused on improving the state’s health, and is on top of around $70 million we spend across Government each year.
We have a goal of becoming the healthiest population by 2025 – this is a bold target and we are not ashamed of it.
The State of Public Health report is available at https://www.dhhs.tas.gov.au/publichealth/epidemiology/state_of_public_health_2018