Fourth national mental health plan: measurement strategy

NMHP PI 1a Participation rates by people with mental illness of working age in employment – General population

Page last updated: May 2011

  • Strategic issue - Social Inclusion and Recovery.
  • Rationale - A range of evidence highlights that people with mental illness are over-represented in national unemployment statistics and that untreated mental illness is a major contributor to lost economic productivity. An increasing body of evidence is accumulating that employment rates for people affected by mental illness can be improved substantially, leading to better health outcomes.
  • Endorsement status - Endorsed by AHMAC Mental Health Standing Committee, February 2011.
  • Date last updated - January 2011.
Indicator details
National Mental Health Performance Framework
Data collection details

Indicator details

  • Description - Proportion of the Australian population aged 16–64 years with a mental illness who are employed.
  • Numerator - Number of people aged 16–64 years with mental illness with a labour force status of employed.
  • Denominator - Number of people aged 16–64 years with mental illness.
  • Computation - (Numerator Denominator) x 100.
  • Calculation conditions
    • Coverage/Scope - People aged 16–64 years identified as having a clinically diagnosable mental illness.
  • Definitions
    • Mental illness defined as self-reported mental and behavioural problems that have lasted for six months, or which the respondent expects to last for six months or more.
    • Employed defined as per the ABS quarterly Labour Force Survey as persons who had a job or business, or who undertook work without pay in a family business for a minimum of one hour per week. Includes persons who were absent from a job or business
    • Age range 16-64 years inclusive.
  • Presentation
    • Percentage.
    • The equivalent calculation for people without a mental health condition will be published for comparative purposes.
  • Disaggregation - State/Territory, and age, subject to sample size.
  • Is specification interim or long-term? - Long-term.
  • Reported in - COAG National Action Plan Progress Reports (Indicator 9 'Participation rates by people with mental illness of working age in employment'). Top of page

National Mental Health Performance Framework

  • Tier - Tier 1 – Health Status and Outcomes.
  • Primary domain - Human functioning.
  • Type of measure - Outcome.
  • Level at which indicator can be useful for benchmarking - State/Territory.

Data collection details

  • Data source(s)
    • Numerator - National Health Survey.
    • Denominator - National Health Survey.
  • Data source(s) type
    • Numerator - Face-to-face survey (Computer Assisted Personal Interview).
    • Denominator - Face-to-face survey (Computer Assisted Personal Interview).
  • Frequency of data source(s) collection
    • Numerator - Triennially.
    • Denominator - Triennially.