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Fact Sheets

Timing of unfolding pandemic, policy responses, and unemployment concerns (Australia)

The health impacts of COVID-19 have been modest in Australia compared to elsewhere. But as restrictions ease and the economy reopens, the risks of infection, morbidity, and job loss will require caution. Live data suggests that unemployment impacts may be considerable.

Such risks are shared unequally across locations, occupations, and industries. A key driver of differences is age and socioeconomic status. For example, areas with less healthy populations - where a resurgence in COVID-19 could wreack the most havoc - tend to be either older, poorer, or both.

Occupations with greatest exposure to infection tend to be low wage, and often held by older women. And, while older workers have so far seen lower rates of job loss than younger workers, historic data suggests that they are twice as likely to become inactive after a spell of unemployment. Such multi-dimensional risks need balanced and informed responses.

To this end, this fact sheet documents the demographic distribution of different health and economic risks across the Australian population, paying particular attention to older groups (aged 55+).

Mature workers

Older Australians are a vital part of the workforce and economy. Almost 20% of Australian workers are over the age of 55 and as the population ages, this proportion will continue to rise. Mature workers face unique challenges. Many experience age discrimination in the workplace or when looking for work. This is occurring despite a lack of evidence that older workers are less productive. Mature workers often juggle work and caring responsibilities, which are less well recognised than the typical caring role faced by younger workers.

This fact sheet outlines the national and state legislation that protects mature workers from discrimination and upholds their right to seek flexible work arrangements. It also addresses the way workplace health and safety laws can be uniquely relevant to older Australians.

Aged care

Australia’s aged care system is evolving. It is where the challenges of population ageing are most apparent and where policy choices have direct impact on the lives of Australians. This fact sheet takes stock of recent changes in aged care policy, industry, and labour force, and highlights research seeking to address its challenges.


Cognitive decline is feared by many as they approach old age. Yet the severe cognitive decline associated with dementia is not a normal part of ageing. This fact sheet explores the impacts of cognitive ageing and decline on individuals.

View the English version here

fact sheet

This fact sheet summarises key insights from the Symposium on Mortality in Australia, held in Melbourne on 13 November 2017 by CEPAR and the Melbourne School of Population and Global Health, including the trends and drivers of mortality change, inequalities in life expectancy, and the potential for future improvements.

Data graphs

This fact sheet examines some of the most notable ageing indices, their stated purposes, methodologies and results.


This fact sheet traces the global distribution of age groups across continents and countries and over time, as if comparing the dimensions of stars and planets.


This fact sheet considers how demographic projections have changed over time and the extent to which they have conformed to real world outcomes.

Elderly friends

More than three million Australians are aged 65+, but they are not a homogenous group. This fact sheet attempts to determine what a typical older Australian is like. Based on Census data we now know her age, where she lives, her weekly disposable income, and who she votes for.