Health Thesaurus

The 7th edition of the Health Thesaurus is a list of subject terms covering concepts of interest to the Department and is a basis for common terminology across the Department.

Page last updated: 26 November 2011

The 7th edition of the Health and Ageing Thesaurus has been developed by the Departmental Library for use in all areas of the Department of Health and Ageing.

The Health and Ageing Thesaurus is a living working tool which assists consistency and subject retrieval of health and ageing concepts. By standardising concepts to one single subject heading, the Thesaurus forms the basis for a common terminology within the Department.

MeSH (medical Subject Headings) produced by the US National Library of Medicine has been used as the basis of the medical terms and the corresponding hierarchical schedules in the Health and Ageing Thesaurus. We are very grateful for their permission to use MeSH in this way. For this edition 2004 MeSH has been used.

Within the Department the Thesaurus has been used for the subject metadata element for the Departmental internet, to structure the relationship of terms in the Senior's Portal consumer website, to provide the automatic match of search terms for consumer health access in the HealthInsite gateway, and to give quality subject retrieval in the Library catalogue - which in turn allows easier access to Departmental and other publications. The Thesaurus is also used by a number of health related organisations in Australia.

The Thesaurus can be used for classification or indexing of all types of documents and files, from personal files to corporate databases, and hence to assist in retrieval of corporate information. It is also used in Document management and Record management systems.

An online version of the Health and Ageing Thesaurus is available, alternatively for ease of downloading, the thesaurus is available here in several PDF parts:


In this section

Document help

When accessing large documents (over 500 KB in size), it is recommended that the following procedure be used:

  1. Click the link with the RIGHT mouse button
  2. Choose "Save Target As.../Save Link As..." depending on your browser
  3. Select an appropriate folder on a local drive to place the downloaded file

Attempting to open large documents within the browser window (by left-clicking) may inhibit your ability to continue browsing while the document is opening and/or lead to system problems.

To view PDF (Portable Document Format) documents, you will need to have a PDF reader installed on your computer. A number of PDF readers are available through the Australian Government Information Management Office (AGIMO) Web Guide website.