Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

OBJECTIVE: To review Australian policies on active transport, defined as walking and cycling for utilitarian purposes. To estimate the potential health impact of achieving four active transport policy scenarios. METHODS: A policy review was undertaken, using key words to search government websites. Potential health benefits were quantified using a cohort simulation Markov model to estimate obesity and transport injury-related health effects of an increase in active transport. Health adjusted life years (HALYs) gained and healthcare cost savings from diseases averted were estimated. Budget thresholds to achieve cost-effectiveness were estimated for each scenario. RESULTS: There is broad recognition of the health-related benefits of active transport from all levels of Australian government. Modelling results suggest significant health-related benefits of achieving increased prevalence of active transport. Total HALYs saved assuming a one-year effect ranged from 565 (95%UI 173-985) to 12,105 (95%UI 4,970-19,707), with total healthcare costs averted ranging from $6.6M (95%UI $1.9M-11.3M) to $141.2M (95%UI $53.8M-227.8M). CONCLUSION: Effective interventions that improve rates of active transport may result in substantial healthcare-related cost savings through a decrease in conditions related to obesity. Implications for public health: Significant potential exists for effective and cost-effective interventions that result in more walking and cycling.

Original publication

DOI

10.1111/1753-6405.12726

Type

Journal article

Journal

Aust N Z J Public Health

Publication Date

12/2017

Volume

41

Pages

611 - 616

Keywords

active transport, obesity, policy, Australia, Bicycling, Cost-Benefit Analysis, Health Care Costs, Humans, Markov Chains, Models, Theoretical, Obesity, Public Health, Public Policy, Quality-Adjusted Life Years, Walking