This bulletin presents data on drug-related hospital separations in Australia from 1993–2012 for the following drug types: opioids, cocaine, amphetamines and cannabis.
A hospital separation is defined as an episode of care for an admitted patient, which may refer to a total hospital stay (from admission to discharge), or a portion of a hospital stay beginning or ending in a change of type of care, or transfer to another hospital.
At the time of separation, a principal (main) diagnosis, and up to 40 secondary diagnoses may be made. The data presented in this bulletin include only hospital separations where opioids, cocaine, amphetamines or cannabis were determined to be the principal (i.e. main) reason for the hospital stay. The data presented will therefore be an under-estimate of the total number of drug-related hospital admissions.