The last decade has seen a decrease in the number of heart disease deaths, according to the latest data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).
Figures released in the Causes of Death, Australia, 2010 report yesterday (March 20) indicated that the proportion of lives claimed by the disease fell by five per cent compared to 2001, dropping to a total of 21,708.
The mortality rate of circulatory diseases also fell by 6 per cent, dropping to 32 per cent of all deaths in the country.
The report found that while the leading cause of death in Australia in 2010 was ischaemic heart disease – reduced blood supply to the heart muscle – cancer still formed a significant proportion of the statistics.
Accounting for 5.6 per cent of all deaths, lung cancer was responsible for the most deaths caused by cancer overall.
According to the ABS, lung cancer is now the second leading cause of death for males and the fourth leading cause for females and claimed 1,061 more lives than ten years ago.
The startling figures may be enough to prompt some Australians to stop smoking – and some private health insurance providers offer access to lifestyle management programs to help aid the transition to a smoke-free lifestyle.