Projected future trends of hospital service use for selected obesity-related conditions

Robert Adams, Graham Tucker, Graeme Hugo, Catherine L. Hill, David H. Wilson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


Background: The duel problems of obesity and the aging of society are likely to produce substantially increased demand on health services in the future. We examine the projected burden which four obesity-related conditions potentially can place on the hospital system in Australia: diabetes, obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA), knee replacements, and bariatric surgery. Methods: Separations for each condition were obtained from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) data from 1990 to 2005. Projections of age specific rates for each condition/procedure to 2020 by sex and 5-year age groups developed using double exponential smoothing were applied to population projections to estimate numbers of separations or procedures. Results: Large, significant increases in rates per 100,000 population for each condition/procedure occurred from 1990 to 2005 for each gender and across all adult age groups. Numbers of separations for diabetes are estimated to increase from 50,258 in 2005 to 180,057 in 2020 and for OSA from 32,262 to 83,535. Procedures for total knee replacements are projected to increase from 28,490 in 2005 to 67,619 in 2020 and for bariatric surgery from 32,262 to 83,535. Conclusion: The combined effects of demographic change with a rapidly aging population along with a high and increasing prevalence of obesity will continue to drive the four conditions/procedures studied and this will have a considerable effect on health resources. The consequences of not acting, or acting ineffectively, are high and constitute a serious threat to future public health.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)133-141
Number of pages9
JournalObesity Research and Clinical Practice
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished or Issued - 1 Jul 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Bariatric surgery
  • Diabetes
  • Health service use
  • Modeling
  • Obstructive sleep apnoea
  • Total knee replacements

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Nutrition and Dietetics

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