3.1 Tonsillectomy hospitalisations, 17 years and under

Tonsillectomy, an operation to remove tonsils, is a common surgery in children and young people. Find out about variation in tonsillectomy hospitalisation rates in the Fourth Australian Atlas of Healthcare Variation 2021.

At a glance

  • Tonsillectomy is a common surgery in childhood that is used to treat recurrent throat infections that affect the tonsils (tonsillitis) and obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA), but there are uncertainties about its benefits
  • In 2017–18, the rate of hospitalisation for tonsillectomy in children and young people was 6 times as high in the area with the highest rate compared with the area with the lowest rate
  • More information about the short- and long-term outcomes of tonsillectomy is needed to ensure evidence-based care is provided to children with recurrent tonsillitis or OSA
  • Further developing the Australian Society of Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery ear, nose and throat data registry could add to the knowledge base about outcomes and provide information for effective peer review of tonsillectomy.

Interactive maps, graphs and data

Data show variation in rates by geographic location of patient residence. To use the interactive maps and graphs:

  • Hover or click on maps and graphs for details of data points
  • Use the dropdown boxes at the bottom of graphs to select states and territories, SA3s or PHNs

Learn more about using the interactive Atlas or how to interpret the data.

Map of rates across Australia

Rates by local area

//viz.aihw.gov.au/t/Public/views/Histogram_Tonsillectomy/Histogram?%3Aiid=1&%3Aembed=y#1

Rates by state and territory

//viz.aihw.gov.au/t/Public/views/SOP_Tonsillectomy/Stateandterritory?%3Aiid=1&%3Aembed=y#1

Rates by remoteness and SES

//viz.aihw.gov.au/t/Public/views/SOP_Tonsillectomy/RemotenessandSES?%3Aiid=1&%3Aembed=y#1

About the data

About the data  - Tonsillectomy hospitalisations, 17 years and under

Data are sourced from the National Hospital Morbidity Database, and include admitted patients in both public and private hospitals.

Rates are based on the number of hospitalisations for tonsillectomy per 100,000 people aged 17 years and under in 2012–13, 2015–16 and 2017–18.

Because a record is included for each hospitalisation  for the procedure, rather than for each patient, patients hospitalised for the procedure more than once in the financial year will be counted more than once.

The analysis and maps are based on the usual residential address of the patient and not the location  of the hospital.

Rates are age and sex standardised to allow comparisons between populations with different age and sex structures.

Data quality issues – for example, the extent of identification of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander status in datasets – could influence the variation seen.

Some private hospitals in Tasmania admit public patients under a contractual arrangement. There is a small over-count of hospitalisations for the procedure  in Tasmania because hospitalisations were recorded by both contracting hospital and contracted hospital.

 

About the Atlas and how to interpret the data visualisations

This document outlines how to interpret the data correctly and explains the limitations of the data prior to using the Atlas:

2021
Publication, report or update

Map of rates across Australia

Rates by local area

//viz.aihw.gov.au/t/Public/views/Histogram_Tonsillectomy/Histogram?%3Aiid=1&%3Aembed=y#1

Rates by state and territory

//viz.aihw.gov.au/t/Public/views/SOP_Tonsillectomy/Stateandterritory?%3Aiid=1&%3Aembed=y#1

Rates by remoteness and SES

//viz.aihw.gov.au/t/Public/views/SOP_Tonsillectomy/RemotenessandSES?%3Aiid=1&%3Aembed=y#1

About the data

About the data  - Tonsillectomy hospitalisations, 17 years and under

Data are sourced from the National Hospital Morbidity Database, and include admitted patients in both public and private hospitals.

Rates are based on the number of hospitalisations for tonsillectomy per 100,000 people aged 17 years and under in 2012–13, 2015–16 and 2017–18.

Because a record is included for each hospitalisation  for the procedure, rather than for each patient, patients hospitalised for the procedure more than once in the financial year will be counted more than once.

The analysis and maps are based on the usual residential address of the patient and not the location  of the hospital.

Rates are age and sex standardised to allow comparisons between populations with different age and sex structures.

Data quality issues – for example, the extent of identification of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander status in datasets – could influence the variation seen.

Some private hospitals in Tasmania admit public patients under a contractual arrangement. There is a small over-count of hospitalisations for the procedure  in Tasmania because hospitalisations were recorded by both contracting hospital and contracted hospital.

 

About the Atlas and how to interpret the data visualisations

This document outlines how to interpret the data correctly and explains the limitations of the data prior to using the Atlas:

2021
Publication, report or update

Rates by patient funding status

Rates for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

//viz.aihw.gov.au/t/Public/views/Tonsillectomyindicators/RatesbyAboriginalandTorresStraitIslanderstatus?%3Aiid=2&%3Aembed=y#2

About the data

About the data  - Tonsillectomy hospitalisations, 17 years and under

Data are sourced from the National Hospital Morbidity Database, and include admitted patients in both public and private hospitals.

Rates are based on the number of hospitalisations for tonsillectomy per 100,000 people aged 17 years and under in 2012–13, 2015–16 and 2017–18.

Because a record is included for each hospitalisation  for the procedure, rather than for each patient, patients hospitalised for the procedure more than once in the financial year will be counted more than once.

The analysis and maps are based on the usual residential address of the patient and not the location  of the hospital.

Rates are age and sex standardised to allow comparisons between populations with different age and sex structures.

Data quality issues – for example, the extent of identification of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander status in datasets – could influence the variation seen.

Some private hospitals in Tasmania admit public patients under a contractual arrangement. There is a small over-count of hospitalisations for the procedure  in Tasmania because hospitalisations were recorded by both contracting hospital and contracted hospital.

 

About the Atlas and how to interpret the data visualisations

This document outlines how to interpret the data correctly and explains the limitations of the data prior to using the Atlas:

2021
Publication, report or update

Rates by patient funding status

Rates for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

//viz.aihw.gov.au/t/Public/views/Tonsillectomyindicators/RatesbyAboriginalandTorresStraitIslanderstatus?%3Aiid=2&%3Aembed=y#2

About the data

About the data  - Tonsillectomy hospitalisations, 17 years and under

Data are sourced from the National Hospital Morbidity Database, and include admitted patients in both public and private hospitals.

Rates are based on the number of hospitalisations for tonsillectomy per 100,000 people aged 17 years and under in 2012–13, 2015–16 and 2017–18.

Because a record is included for each hospitalisation  for the procedure, rather than for each patient, patients hospitalised for the procedure more than once in the financial year will be counted more than once.

The analysis and maps are based on the usual residential address of the patient and not the location  of the hospital.

Rates are age and sex standardised to allow comparisons between populations with different age and sex structures.

Data quality issues – for example, the extent of identification of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander status in datasets – could influence the variation seen.

Some private hospitals in Tasmania admit public patients under a contractual arrangement. There is a small over-count of hospitalisations for the procedure  in Tasmania because hospitalisations were recorded by both contracting hospital and contracted hospital.

 

About the Atlas and how to interpret the data visualisations

This document outlines how to interpret the data correctly and explains the limitations of the data prior to using the Atlas:

2021
Publication, report or update

National, state and territory trends

National overview

State and territory

Consistently high low

//viz.aihw.gov.au/t/Public/views/Tonsillectomyindicators/ConsistentlyhighandlowSA3s?%3Aiid=3&%3Aembed=y#1

About the data

About the data  - Tonsillectomy hospitalisations, 17 years and under

Data are sourced from the National Hospital Morbidity Database, and include admitted patients in both public and private hospitals.

Rates are based on the number of hospitalisations for tonsillectomy per 100,000 people aged 17 years and under in 2012–13, 2015–16 and 2017–18.

Because a record is included for each hospitalisation  for the procedure, rather than for each patient, patients hospitalised for the procedure more than once in the financial year will be counted more than once.

The analysis and maps are based on the usual residential address of the patient and not the location  of the hospital.

Rates are age and sex standardised to allow comparisons between populations with different age and sex structures.

Data quality issues – for example, the extent of identification of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander status in datasets – could influence the variation seen.

Some private hospitals in Tasmania admit public patients under a contractual arrangement. There is a small over-count of hospitalisations for the procedure  in Tasmania because hospitalisations were recorded by both contracting hospital and contracted hospital.

 

About the Atlas and how to interpret the data visualisations

This document outlines how to interpret the data correctly and explains the limitations of the data prior to using the Atlas:

2021
Publication, report or update

National overview

State and territory

Consistently high low

//viz.aihw.gov.au/t/Public/views/Tonsillectomyindicators/ConsistentlyhighandlowSA3s?%3Aiid=3&%3Aembed=y#1

About the data

About the data  - Tonsillectomy hospitalisations, 17 years and under

Data are sourced from the National Hospital Morbidity Database, and include admitted patients in both public and private hospitals.

Rates are based on the number of hospitalisations for tonsillectomy per 100,000 people aged 17 years and under in 2012–13, 2015–16 and 2017–18.

Because a record is included for each hospitalisation  for the procedure, rather than for each patient, patients hospitalised for the procedure more than once in the financial year will be counted more than once.

The analysis and maps are based on the usual residential address of the patient and not the location  of the hospital.

Rates are age and sex standardised to allow comparisons between populations with different age and sex structures.

Data quality issues – for example, the extent of identification of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander status in datasets – could influence the variation seen.

Some private hospitals in Tasmania admit public patients under a contractual arrangement. There is a small over-count of hospitalisations for the procedure  in Tasmania because hospitalisations were recorded by both contracting hospital and contracted hospital.

 

About the Atlas and how to interpret the data visualisations

This document outlines how to interpret the data correctly and explains the limitations of the data prior to using the Atlas:

2021
Publication, report or update

Data

Download the data sheet for tonsillectomy hospitalisations:

Technical Supplement

Download the Technical Supplement: 

2021
Publication, report or update

Data

Download the data sheet for tonsillectomy hospitalisations:

Technical Supplement

Download the Technical Supplement: 

2021
Publication, report or update