Self Care Research

The State of Self Care in Australia - March 2018

New health review report out now! The State of Self Care in Australia is a review of the ways Australia is attempting to encourage & enable people to look after their own health & wellbeing.

Click here for the full report


Frost and Sullivan Report: Targeted Use of Complementary Medicines: Potential Health Outcomes and Cost Savings in Australia - October 2014

ASMI commissioned Frost and Sullivan, a US research company, to conduct a study which is assessing the economic impact of complementary medicine usage in Australia. Targeted use of complementary medicines. It assesses the potential for complementary medicines to play a bigger role in healthcare by quantifying the potential savings to government healthcare costs by the targeted use of complementary medicines.

Click here for the full report

Click here for the Frost and Sullivan Info graphic


The Value of OTC Medicines in Australia - March 2014

ASMI commissioned The Centre for the Health Economy at Macquarie University to conduct a study that put a value on self medication and self care. The study, The Value of OTC Medicines in Australia, was launched at a Reception in Parliament House, Canberra in March 2014. It found that nonprescription medicines currently save the Australian health economy $10.4 billion through avoided GP visits and productivity gains from reduced work absence and time savings in not having to visit the GP. This equates to a saving of four dollars for every one dollar spent on non-prescription medicines.

It demonstrates that consumers are already comfortable using non-prescription medicines and that non-prescription medicines have an important role to play to help make the healthcare system more sustainable.

The study also looked at the potential future benefits that could be derived from increasing consumer access to medicines through downscheduling from prescription to non-prescription medicines. The study showed that if a group of 11 prescription medicines was down-scheduled to Pharmacist Only, the health economy would save
an additional $2.1 billion.

The 11 prescription medicines selected for the study all have a long history of use. Many are already available without a prescription in comparable overseas markets such as the US, UK, Canada and New Zealand.

The significance of the Macquarie University study is that it provides concrete evidence of how increased consumer access to medicines could contribute towards a more sustainable healthcare system.

Click here for the full report

Minor Ailments Report - September 2009

In August 2009, ASMI commissioned health economist, David L Gadiel of Health Care Intelligence Pty Ltd to further examine the potential economic impact of minor ailments being treated by GPs.

His study showed that the resources devoted to coughs, colds and other minor ailments could free-up the equivalent of 1,000 full time GPs to treat more serious health problems.

It also identifies some $260 million in 'waste and resource misallocation' as a result of Medicare benefits associated with GP treatment of minor ailments. (NOTE: figures quoted in the report related to 2007/8 data only)

Click here to see the full Report

Click here to see the ASMI media release about the Report, dated 7 September


Minor ailments workload in General Practice- 2008

In 2008, ASMI's UK equivalent PAGB (The Proprietary Assocation of Great Britain) & IMS Health released the results of the first study to provide qualification of minor ailment workload in General Practice. For information on this study, see:

Later that year, ASMI commissioned IMS Health Australia to conduct similar research here. The results of this study were released at the ASMI Annual Conference on 19 November 2008.

Click here for a copy of the Conference presentation of these results.

Click here for a copy of the ASMI Media Release about this study.  


The Effects of Calcium Supplements on Osteoporosis- 2007

ASMI, through a co-funding arrangement in partnership with the Department of Health and Ageing, commissioned a systematic review and meta-analysis of existing research on the effect of calcium supplements on osteoporosis.

The study was published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 2007 and attracted widespread international media attention.

The results of this study confirmed that calcium supplementation was effective in the preventive treatment of osteoporotic fractures and bone loss in older people.

The outcomes of that study provide strong economic evidence to support a national Self Care strategy in conjunction with health professionals to create higher community awareness of the need to increase access to Self Care medications such as calcium and vitamin D in population subgroups (such as the elderly in institutional care) where sun exposure is not always possible.