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The Australian National University
DYNOPTA - Dynamic Analyses to Optimise Ageing
ANU College of Medicine, Biology & Environment


AUSTRALIAN longitudinal study of ageing (ALSA)

The Australian Longitudinal Study of Ageing (ALSA) investigates the health and wellbeing of Australians over the age of 70 years. The aim of ALSA is to improve understanding of how social, biomedical, and environmental factors are associated with age-related changes in heath, development of disability, general wellbeing, economic security, use of acute and long-term care services, morbidity, mortality, and 'successful' ageing in people aged 70 and over. ALSA aims to analyse the complex relationships between individual and social factors and changes in health status, health care needs and service utilisation dimensions.Study objectives:

  • Determine the health and functional status levels of an older population sample and track changes in these characteristics over time.
  • Identify factors which promote and maintain health and wellbeing in an ageing population.
  • Identify risk factors for major morbid conditions and social, behavioural and other problems among an ageing population.
  • Analyse the effects on transitions in health and functional status of age, gender, different patterns of comorbidity, availability and nature of informal and formal support arrangements, social and economic circumstances, health care provision and utilisation and other variables of interest.
  • Assess the effects of disease processes on functional status and the demand for health care services and both informal and formal long-term care.
  • Examine the patterns of need for and the utilisation of informal and formal souces of long-term care as they relate to social support networks, economic and housing conditions, care-giving arrangements and the availability of appropriate services.
  • Examine mortality outcomes in the light of changes in health and functional status, medical interventions, self-assessed health, social networks and individual characteristics.

ALSA is funded by the NIA in the US, the South Australia Health Commission, the Austalian and South Australian governments, the Australian Rotary Health Research Fund, the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) and the Elderly Citizens Home PL. Limited funds were also provided by Flinders University.

DYNOPTA Chief Investigator:

For more information about this study, please visit the ALSA website: