Australian Capital Territory
There were 892 hospitalisations with a drug-related principal diagnosis in Australian Capital Territory in 2019-20.
This is equivalent to 207 hospitalisations per 100,000 people, which was a significant increase from 2018-19 (179 hospitalisations per 100,000 people; p<0.001) (Table 1) and higher than the rate in 1999-00 (125 hospitalisations per 100,000 people) (Figure 1).
The rate of hospitalisations was higher among females than males in 2019-20 (249 versus 167 hospitalisations per 100,000 people).
In 2019-20, the rate of hospitalisations was highest among the 20-29 age group, followed by the 10-19 and 30-39 age groups (428, 347, and 267 hospitalisations per 100,000 people, respectively).
Remoteness Area of Usual Residence
Over 99.8% of the population in Australian Capital Territory resided in major cities and the remaining resided in inner regional areas. For this reason, data on hospitalisations by remoteness area are not presented.
External Cause of Drug Poisoning
In 2019-20, 66% of drug-related hospitalisations in Australian Capital Territory were due to drug poisoning. Furthermore, 76% of drug poisoning related hospitalisations were intentional (108 hospitalisations per 100,000 people) and 16% were unintentional (22 hospitalisations per 100,000 people) (Figure 2).
Drug TypeIn 2019-20, the rate of hospitalisations was highest where there was a principal diagnosis indicating amphetamines and other stimulants (40 hospitalisations per 100,000 people), closely followed by non-opioid analgesics (39 hospitalisations per 100,000 people) (Figure 3).
Compared to 2018-19, there was a significant decrease in 2019-20 in the rate of hospitalisations related to antipsychotics and neuroleptics (p<0.050) (Table 1).
In contrast, there were significant increases in the rates of hospitalisations related to amphetamines and other stimulants; non-opioid analgesics; antiepileptic, sedative-hypnotic and antiparkinsonism drugs; opioids; antidepressants; cannabinoids; and multiple drug use (p<0.050) (Table 1).
Figure 1. Age-standardised rate per 100,000 people of drug-related hospitalisations, by sex, Australian Capital Territory, 1999-00 to 2019-20.
Figure 2. Age-standardised rate per 100,000 people of drug-related hospitalisations, by principal diagnosis of mental and behavioural disorder due to substance use (A) and external cause of poisoning (B), Australian Capital Territory, 1999-00 to 2019-20.Note: Age-standardised rates were not calculated if the number of hospitalisations was less than or equal to 10 (please refer to our methods document for details). Suppressed data are visible as gaps in the data series.
Figure 3. Age-standardised rate per 100,000 people of drug-related hospitalisations, by drug identified in the principal diagnosis, Australian Capital Territory, 1999-00 to 2019-20.Note: Age-standardised rates were not calculated if the number of hospitalisations was less than or equal to 10 (please refer to our methods document for details). Suppressed data are visible as gaps in the data series.
Table 1. Age-standardised rate per 100,000 people of drug-related hospitalisations in 2019-20 and rate ratio and p-value for difference compared to 2018-19, in Australian Capital Territory by drug type identified in the principal diagnosis
||Age-standardised rate (95% CI)||2019-20 versus 2018-19|
|All drugs||207 (194,222)||179 (166,192)||1.16 (1.14,1.18)||<0.001|
|Amphetamines and other stimulants||40 (34,47)||36 (30,42)||1.13 (1.09,1.17)||<0.001|
|Non-opioid analgesics||39 (33,45)||37 (32,44)||1.04 (1.00,1.07)||0.027|
|Antiepileptic, sedative-hypnotic and antiparkinsonism drugs||33 (28,39)||24 (20,29)||1.37 (1.32,1.42)||<0.001|
|Opioids||26 (22,32)||25 (20,30)||1.07 (1.03,1.11)||<0.001|
|Antidepressants||23 (19,29)||17 (13,21)||1.41 (1.35,1.48)||<0.001|
|Antipsychotics and neuroleptics||18 (14,23)||21 (17,25)||0.88 (0.84,0.92)||<0.001|
|Cannabinoids||14 (11,18)||12 (9,16)||1.11 (1.05,1.18)||<0.001|
|Multiple drug use||6.9 ( 4.6, 9.9)||2.8 ( 1.4, 4.9)||2.47 (2.24,2.73)||<0.001|
The Drug Trends program is funded by the Australian Government Department of Health under the Drug and Alcohol Program.
We would like to acknowledge the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare for data from the National Hospital Morbidity Database.
Chrzanowska, A., Man, N., Sutherland, R., Degenhardt, L. & Peacock, A. (2021). Trends in drug-related hospitalisations in Australia, 1999-2020. Sydney: National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre, UNSW Sydney.
Hospitalisations data visualisations: https://drugtrends.shinyapps.io/hospital_separations
Hospitalisations methods document: https://ndarc.med.unsw.edu.au/resource-analytics/trends-drug-related-hospitalisations-australia-1999-2020
For other Drug Trends publications on drug-related hospitalisations and drug-induced deaths, go to: https://ndarc.med.unsw.edu.au/project/national-illicit-drug-indicators-project-nidip
For more information on NDARC research, go to: http://ndarc.med.unsw.edu.au/
For more information about the AIHW and NHMD, go to: https://www.aihw.gov.au/
For more information on ICD coding go to: http://www.who.int/classifications/icd/en/ https://www.ihpa.gov.au/what-we-do/icd-10-am-achi-acs-current-edition
For more research from the Drug Trends program go to: https://ndarc.med.unsw.edu.au/program/drug-trends