Health data by the numbers

Latrobe Valley residents experience higher rates of long term health conditions than the state average. file photograph

Michelle Slater

LATROBE Valley residents are 38 per cent more likely to experience mental health conditions including depression or anxiety than the rest of Victoria, according to 2021 Census data.

The Valley also has higher rates of long-term health conditions including arthritis, asthma, cancer and heart disease than the state average.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics released its local government area data last week, which reveals the types of long-term health condition as reported by residents on Census night.

It found that mental health conditions such as depression and anxiety in Latrobe City were at 12.2 per cent compared to the Victorian average at 8.8 per cent.

Latrobe Community Health Service complex care clinical lead Jonathan Fahey said the Latrobe City health data was roughly on par with other regional areas such as Glenelg, Ballarat and Shepparton.

Comparative Census data shows that rates of long term health conditions in Melbourne and the inner-eastern local government area of Booroondara are below the state average.

Mr Fahey also pointed to Latrobe City’s larger proportion of over 55s which may contribute to higher rates of age related conditions such as arthritis, cancer or heart disease.

Mr Fahey urged people to consider their diet, exercise levels and exposure to social media and screens to improve physical and mental conditions.