Heart disease is the nation’s leading cause of death, with an estimated 1 in 6 Australians living with the disease.^ In 2019, the number of Medibank and ahm customers admitted to hospital for heart related issues increased 13.4% compared to 2017.
Heart and cardiovascular disease (CVD)
Cardiovascular disease covers a number of conditions that affect the heart and blood vessels including coronary heart disease, stroke and heart failure. By 2032, it’s expected to cost Australia $22 billion^^.
Medibank trends in heart health - 2019 by the numbers
Male vs female customers with heart disease
In 2019, Medibank saw an 19% increase in the number of hospital admissions for women with cardiac issues, compared to 2017.
Percentage change in the proportion of customers with cardiac claims (2019 vs 2017)
Medibank Chief Medical Officer Dr Linda Swan says:
“Cardiovascular disease is our country’s biggest killer and last year we supported 33,302 Medibank and ahm customers admitted to hospital for heart related issues - a 13.4% increase since 2017."
"It’s well known that maintaining a healthy lifestyle is important to reducing the risk of heart disease by quitting smoking, maintaining a healthy weight and blood pressure level, exercising and moderating the amount alcohol you drink. However the 2019 Australia health tracker released in December shows that we’ve got worse at doing this, with the rates of physical inactivity, obesity and overweight and high blood pressure all increasing. This may be why the number of customers admitted for a cardiac condition has increased across each age bracket from 40 through to 99 over the past three years."
"Of the more than 20,000 Medibank customers who have their first acute cardiac event each year, 50% are then readmitted to hospital for a cardiac-related issue within the next 5 years."
"To help prevent that and give our customers the support they need to improve their health and quality of life, we are piloting our Medibank Heart Health at Home program - one of the first personalised, fully telehealth-delivered cardiac rehabilitation services in Australia. We hope it will increase the uptake of this type of rehabilitation and make it more easily accessible to our rural and regional customers in particular."
^^ Australian Bureau of Statistics 2018, Causes of Death 2017, ABS cat. no. 3303.0.
^^^ 9,167 NSW customers who had cardiac related claims compared to 6,898
For the purposes of this update, heart disease related treatmentincludes cardiothoracic surgery, clinical cardiology and interventional cardiology.