Submissions

The following submissions are publicly available. Submissions made prior to 2018 have not been listed. 

Senate Inquiry into Sleep Health Awareness in Australia

October 2018

The study’s submission to the inquiry takes a longitudinal approach to provide insight into the prevalence, determinants, and consequences of sleep difficulties in Australian women. The data shows that sleep difficulties are often persistent and with significant consequences for women’s wellbeing. They are associated with poor mental health, disease, falls, and accidents. Women’s life stage plays a large part in sleep health and women report issues during pregnancy and motherhood, the menopause transition and old age.

>> Download the PDF

 


Senate Inquiry on the Future of Stillbirth Research and Education in Australia

June 2018

The study’s submission to the Senate Inquiry on the Future of Stillbirth Research and Education in Australia highlighted the availability of the study’s longitudinal data on stillbirth, the current issues in accessing timely and consistent administrative datasets from the different states, and the study’s role in communicating the results of its research into stillbirth.

>> Download the PDF

 


Senate Inquiry into the Obesity Epidemic in Australia

July 2018

For over 20 years, the study has tracked rising prevalence of overweight and obesity in Australian women and the adverse consequences to their health. Study data shows that despite an awareness of public health messages, Australian women are not meeting guidelines for exercise and nutrition and their weight loss attempts are largely unsuccessful. The study’s submission discusses the causes of obesity in Australian women and the impact of mothers’ pre-conception health on childhood obesity. It also highlights concerns about women’s understanding of public health messages and the need for support to make lifestyle changes.

>> Download the PDF

 

SELECTED CONTRIBUTIONS TO GOVERNMENT POLICY

2010 Australian Government’s National Women’s Health Policy

The National Women’s Health Policy (2010) was developed as a guide for the next 20 years to improving the health and wellbeing of all women in Australia, especially those at greatest risk of poor health.

Research from ALSWH is cited extensively in the policy, with evidence from ALSWH contributing to recommendations for women of all ages concerning:

  • Sexual and reproductive health (outcomes and risks)
  • Mental health, and access to mental health services
  • Health behaviours (diet, smoking, alcohol consumption, physical activity)
  • Chronic conditions (such as diabetes, heart disease, arthritis)
  • Risk factors for depression and anxiety; health outcomes associated with depression and anxiety
  • Adherence to healthy behaviour guidelines
  • The impact of interpersonal violence and abuse on mental and physical health
  • The impact of comorbid conditions on physical and psychological health and social function

ALSWH contributed to recommendations for young women’s health concerning:

  • Transitional moments in young women’s lives when health promotion can be targeted
  • The impact of social pressure on health issues such as body weight, self-image and risk taking behaviours
  • Young women’s aspirations
  • Weight gain after pregnancy

The Study contributed to recommendations for mid-age women’s health concerning:  

  • Symptoms of menopause

Contributions were made to recommendations for older women’s health concerning:

  • The experience of widowhood and the availability of services to assist with older bereaved women’s health, financial and social needs
  • The ability of older women with chronic conditions to manage on their available income

For more information visit: http://www.health.gov.au/womenshealthpolicy

 

Perinatal Mental Health

Data from the study has contributed to a significant body of work on perinatal mental health. This research has been used as an evidence base for clinical practice change and innovative service development with industry partners. This includes the mummatters mental health tool developed by BUPA, the 2017 perinatal mental healthcare guidelines developed by COPE, and Medicare changes aimed at improving women’s mental health during the perinatal period. 

 

The 2014 Australian Government’s Physical Activity Guidelines

Published research from the ALSWH 1973-78 cohort was cited 7 times in the systematic review of evidence supporting these guidelines. Evidence from the ALSWH contributed to recommendations concerning

  • Prevalence and predictors of weight gain, sedentary behaviours and health
  • New domains of physical activity that need to be considered in activity guidelines

For more information visit: http://www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/content/health-pubhlth-strateg-phys-act-guidelines

 

Choose Health: Be Active. A physical activity guide for older Australians

This guide provides an evidence-based guide for optimal physical activity for older adults. It was prepared in 2008 by Professor Wendy Brown for the Australian Government Department of Veteran’s Affairs and the Department of Health and Ageing (now the Department of Health).  

For more information visit: http://www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/Content/phd-physical-choose-health

 

The 2013 New South Wales Government’s Health Framework for Women’s Health

Published research from ALSWH contributed to recommendations concerning:

  • How socioeconomic inequalities are associated with health conditions and health behaviours in young women which can subsequently affect their risk of developing further health conditions
  • Accessing health services
  • Managing dementia, osteoarthritis and falls
  • Key strategies included supporting healthy lifestyles, appropriate mental health services, support for women with a disability or those who are caring for a person with a disability

For more information visit: https://www.saxinstitute.org.au/publications/evidence-check-library/womens-health-in-nsw-a-life-course-approach

 

National Respite for Carers Program 

ALSWH data on mid- and older-aged women caregivers were used to inform the National Respite for Carers Program, which is one of several Government initiatives designed to support and assist relatives and friends caring at home for people who are unable to care for themselves because of disability or frailty.

Projects commissioned by the Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing in 2006 and 2009 were also used to provide information to support policy development for the Employed Carers Innovative Project (ECIP).

 

National Continence Management Strategy

The Study informed the National Continence Management Strategy with respect to prevalence, incidence and risk factors for urinary incontinence, the effects of ageing on incontinence, and the impacts of incontinence on the lives of older women. Information from the study informed the preparation of information brochures available on www.bladderbowel.gov.au

Data from the study also informed the development of “Best practice in the prevention and treatment of constipation in adults under 65 years” 

For more information visit: http://bladderbowel.gov.au/ncp/ncms/

 

Submissions

Data have also been used in numerous submissions by other agencies, for example:

  • Older Women’s Network: Older Women’s Network NSW notes on a submission to ALRC Grey Areas—Age Barriers to Work in Commonwealth Laws (IP 41) 28 May 2012
  • Mental Health Council of Australia Submission to: The Productivity Commission Inquiry into Aged Care July 2010
  • Submission to House of Representatives Standing Committee on Health and Ageing, Inquiry into Obesity in Australia

Health Information and Resources

We are developing a wide range of health information to help women of all ages understand their health issues. 

Scoll to see the full list of fact sheets, research summaries, and useful links, or click the link to jump to a topic:

Mental Health
Physical Activity
Diet and Nutrition
Reproductive Health
Ageing
Caring
Work Patterns
Menopause
Chronic Conditions
Cohort Summaries
Research Techniques


 

Mental Health

Fact sheets:

Domestic violence

Binge drinking and risk of depression in young Australian women

Plain language research summaries:

Depression increases stroke risk in mid-aged women

Miscarriage: Why women need more time to grieve

Contrary to expectations, drought did not lead to poorer mental health among mid-aged Australian women

Further education - Is it associated with improved physical and mental health?

Useful links:

Australian Government's website with a library of information on mental health and wellbeing. Mind Health Connect


Physical Activity

Fact sheets:

Vigorous exercise – is it worth the extra sweat?

Plain language research summaries:

Does physical activity counteract the adverse effects of weight?

Sitting time not associated with heart disease

Activity during late mid-age helps to delay joint symptoms in women

Links to additional resources:

A physical activity guide for older Australians. Choose Health: Be Active

Tips and ideas on how to be physically active for adults 18-64. Australia's Physcial Activity and Sedentary Behaviour Guidelines.


Diet and Nutrition

Fact sheets:

Comparing Australian women’s diets to national dietary guidelines

Plain language research summaries:

Australian alcohol guidelines – who is a risky drinker?

Useful links:

Dietary Guidelines for Australians: A Guide to Healthy Eating


Reproductive Health

Fact sheets:

Predictors of sexually transmissible infections

Birth interventions differ for urban and rural women

Pre-pregnancy diet and risk of common complications in pregnancy

Plain language research summaries:

Miscarriage, preterm delivery and stillbirth: What is normal anyway?

Smoking linked to painful periods


Ageing

Plain language research summaries:

Frailty patterns in Australian women and the impact of income stress in later life


Caring

Fact sheets:

The cumulative health toll of caregiving after domestic abuse

Women carers are more diverse than once thought

Videos

From child care to elder care: Findings from the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women's Health

 

 

Links to additional resources:

Keeping minds well: caring till it hurts http://www.youngcarersnsw.asn.au/Documents/3135_TheWesleyReport.pdf


Work Patterns

Fact sheets:

Women aged 31-36 years and work

Work and retirement: Results from a sub-study of women aged 55-60 years


Menopause

Video:

Menopause - When does it happen?

Fact sheets:

Moderating menopausal symptoms


Chronic Conditions

Plain language research summaries:

Risk of late stage diagnosis of breast cancer: Is it where you live or how much you weigh?


Cohort Summary Snapshots:

1989-95 Cohort Snapshot

1973-78 Cohort Snapshot

1946-51 Cohort Snapshot

1921-26 Cohort Snapshot

1921-26 Cohort Snapshot (2018)


 

Research Techniques

Case Study - Estimating the prevalence of dementia using Capture-Recpature and linked data