A new report from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) has found that the death rate from asthma in Australia has fallen by almost 70% since the 1980s.

The report on asthma and COPD, Mortality from Asthma and COPD in Australia, says that while the United States and the United Kingdom report similar asthma mortality rates to Australia for people aged five to 34, rates are lower in Poland, Italy, Japan, Germany and France.

Spokesperson for AIHW’s Australian Centre for Airways Disease Monitoring (ACAM), Guy Marks said that the asthma mortality rate in Australia had fluctuated over the last century, with peaks observed in the late 1950s, mid-1960s and late 1980s.

“In recent years, the asthma mortality rate has declined substantially, but remains relatively high on an international scale at 1.5 per 100,000 population,” Professor Marks said.