Understanding the health behaviour and health information needs of women in Australia

Women's Health Survey 2018 Results

The Jean Hailes fourth annual Women's Health Survey reveals the health needs, behaviours and concerns of women across the country. This year, 15,262 women aged 18 years or older and living in Australia responded to the survey.

Here are some highlights of the survey results.

Download the full report pdf and survey highlights infographic
Read the survey media release

Physical health

Physical health
  • 50.8% of women described their current weight as overweight or obese
  • 9.5% of women reported drinking alcohol daily
  • 50.4% of women described their overall health as very good or excellent
  • 70.3% reported doing at least two hours of moderate physical activity per week

Mental health

Mental health
  • Almost half of the women (46.1%) who responded to the survey had been diagnosed with depression or anxiety by a doctor or psychologist
  • Two-thirds of women (66.9%) reported feeling nervous, anxious or on edge in the last four weeks
  • More than a third of women (34.3%) reported not getting time to themselves on a weekly basis

Health needs

Health needs
  • More than one-in-four women have discussed or need to discuss with their doctor a lack of interest in sex in the last 12 months
  • Almost one-in-four (23.9%) could not afford to see a health professional when they needed one

Health information

Health information

Top 5 health topics women want to know about:

  1. Weight management
  2. Healthy eating / nutrition
  3. Mental and emotional health
  4. Anxiety
  5. Menopause

Other highlights include:

- 56.9% of women said they will first seek information by searching the internet when they have a health concern; this increased to 63.5% for women aged 18-50

- fact sheets and face-to-face education were the most popular ways to receive health information with 59.4% and 42% of respondents across all age groups, respectively

- apps were more popular among younger age groups with 38% of women under 51 choosing them as a preferred way to receive health information, compared to 18.2% of women older than 50.

For more information and media enquiries please contact Janelle Carrigan.