The Victorian Population Health Survey (VPHS) was first undertaken in 2001 and is an ongoing source of high-quality information on the health and wellbeing of Victorian adults. The information collected in the annual survey is used to inform and support planning, implementation and evaluation of adult population health and other health programs in Victoria.

The 2018 survey captured information from 7,100 adult Victorians, across the following domains: obesity, physical activity, fruit and vegetable consumption, smoking status, alcohol consumption, mental health and wellbeing, chronic diseases, preventative health checks, eye health, social capital, and palliative care.

Summary of key findings

  • More than 1 in 5 Victorian adults (21.3%) were categorised as obese according to their body mass index – a significantly higher proportion of men (22.1%) were obese compared with women (20.4%)
  • More than half of Victorian adults (52.9%) undertook adequate physical activity to meet the national guidelines
  • Just 5.9% of Victorian adults met the recommended minimum daily intake for vegetables, while 43.1% met the recommended minimum daily intake for fruit
  • Close to 1 in 8 Victorian adults (12.6%) were daily smokers – a significantly higher proportion of men (15.0%) were daily smokers compared with women (10.1%)
  • A higher proportion of Victorian men (69.8%) were at increased lifetime of risk of alcohol-related harm compared with women (53.5%)
  • More than 1 in 7 Victorian adults (15.0%) reported high or very high levels of psychological distress
  • Nearly 1 in 5 Victorian adults (19.4%) reported being diagnosed with two or more of seven common chronic diseases (excluding asthma)
  • 79.9% of adults had a blood pressure check in the previous 2 years 1 in 10 (10.8%) Victorian adults had not visited an eye health professional in the last five years
  • Nearly 1 in 3 Victorian women (30.3%) reported never, or not often, feeling safe when walking down their street after dark
  • Close to three quarters of Victorian adults (73.8%) had not discussed, or did not have, an end of life care plan

For more information, or to speak to VAHI’s Health Intelligence Unit, please email [email protected]