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Remoteness classification (ASGS-RA) N

Identifying and definitional attributes

Metadata item type:Help on this termValue Domain
Synonymous names:Help on this termRemoteness area; Remoteness structure
METeOR identifier:Help on this term531713
Registration status:Help on this termHealth, Superseded 06/09/2018
Definition:Help on this term

Australian Statistical Geography Standard-Remoteness Area (ASGS-RA) is a geographical classification which defines locations in terms of remoteness, i.e. the physical distance of a location from the nearest Urban Centre.

Context:Help on this term

Geographic remoteness is essentially a measure of a physical location's level of access to goods and services. Large population centres tend to have a greater range of goods and services available than small centres. Typically, a population centre is not likely to provide a full range of goods and services until its population reaches around 250,000 people.

The measures of remoteness used by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) are based on population estimates obtained from the Census of Population and Housing, conducted every 5 years. Remoteness measures are calculated using Accessibility/Remoteness Index of Australia (ARIA+) scores, which are based on the distance of geographic locations from the nearest population centre in various size ranges. The lower the ARIA+ score for a location, the better its level of access to goods and services.

Information in relation to how remoteness is defined and calculated is available from the Geography portal on the ABS website.

Information in relation to how ARIA+ scores are calculated for physical locations is available from the Australian Population and Migration Research Centre (APMRC) website.

Representational attributes

Representation class:Help on this termCode
Data type:Help on this termNumber
Format:Help on this termN
Maximum character length:Help on this term1
Permissible values:Help on this term
ValueMeaning
1Major cities of Australia
2Inner regional Australia
3Outer regional Australia
4Remote Australia
5Very remote Australia
6Migratory
Supplementary values:Help on this term
9Not stated/inadequately described

Collection and usage attributes

Guide for use:Help on this term

CODE 1     Major cities of Australia

'Major cities of Australia' includes Statistical Area Level 1s (SA1s) with an average Accessibility/Remoteness Index of Australia (ARIA+) index value of 0 to 0.2.

CODE 2     Inner regional Australia

'Inner regional Australia' includes SA1s with an average ARIA+ index value greater than 0.2 and less than or equal to 2.4.

CODE 3     Outer regional Australia

'Outer regional Australia' includes SA1s with an average ARIA+ index value greater than 2.4 and less than or equal to 5.92.

CODE 4     Remote Australia

'Remote Australia' includes SA1s with an average ARIA+ index value greater than 5.92 and less than or equal to 10.53.

CODE 5     Very remote Australia

'Very remote Australia' includes SA1s with an average ARIA+ index value greater than 10.53.

CODE 6     Migratory

'Migratory' is composed of off-shore, shipping and migratory SA1s.

Collection methods:Help on this term

In this value domain, physical distance is defined in terms of ARIA+ codes, rather than a simple linear distance between points.

The list of permissible values for this value domain, i.e. codes 1 to 6, is intended to be directly mappable to the values used by the ABS to describe remoteness areas, i.e. codes 0 to 5.

Comments:Help on this term

In its initial form, as developed by the National Centre for Social Applications of Geographic Information Centres (now located within the Australian Population and Migration Research Centre) and the then Department of Health and Aged Care in 1999, ARIA scores ranged from 0 to 12 and were based on proximity to 4 points of reference.

A new version, ARIA+, was introduced in 2003, with ARIA+ scores now based on proximity to 5 points of reference. Also, changes were made to account for Tasmania's unique status as an island state, and to increase accuracy for locations at the urban fringe.

Prior to 2011, ARIA+ scores were calculated for individual Census Collection Districts (CCDs). Following the phasing out of the Australian Standard Geographical Classification (ASGC) and the introduction of the Australian Statistical Geography Standard (ASGS) by the ABS in 2011, ARIA+ scores are now calculated for individual Statistical Area Level 1s (SA1s). 

Source and reference attributes

Submitting organisation:Help on this termAustralian Institute of Health and Welfare
Steward:Help on this termAustralian Institute of Health and Welfare
Origin:Help on this term

Publications detailing the ASGS remoteness classification are available free of charge from the ABS website:

Australian Bureau of Statistics 2013. 1270.055.005 - Australian Statistical Geography Standard (ASGS): Volume 5 - Remoteness Structure, July 2011. Viewed 15 July 2013,
http://www.abs.gov.au/AUSSTATS/abs@.nsf/DetailsPage/
1270.0.55.005July%202011?OpenDocument

Reference documents:Help on this term

Information relating to the development of the ARIA and ARIA+ scores by the National Centre for Social Applications of Geographic Information Systems (GISCA) is available from the APMRC website:

Australian Population and Migration Research Centre (APMRC) 2013. ARIA (Accessibility/Remoteness Index of Australia). Viewed 15 July 2013,
http://www.adelaide.edu.au/apmrc/research/projects/
category/about_aria.html

Relational attributes

Related metadata references:Help on this term

See also Admitted patient care remoteness classification (ASGS-RA) N Health, Superseded 06/09/2018, ACT Health, Final 09/08/2018

See also Medicare remoteness classification (ASGS-RA) N Commonwealth Department of Health, Standard 14/10/2015

See also Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) remoteness classification (ASGS-RA) X Commonwealth Department of Health, Standard 17/12/2015

Supersedes Remoteness classification (ASGC-RA) N Housing assistance, Standard 01/05/2013, Health, Superseded 21/11/2013, Disability, Standard 13/08/2015, Community Services (retired), Standard 10/04/2013

Has been superseded by Remoteness classification (ASGS-RA) N Health, Standard 06/09/2018

Data elements implementing this value domain:Help on this term

Health-care incident—geographic remoteness, remoteness classification (ASGS-RA) code N Health, Superseded 06/09/2018

Person—geographic remoteness, classification (ASGS-RA) N Health, Superseded 06/09/2018

Classification scheme attributes

Classification scheme:Australian Statistical Geography Standard 2011
Synonymous names:Help on this termASGS 2011
METeOR identifier:Help on this term437772
Registration status:Help on this termHealth, Superseded 06/12/2016
Early Childhood, Superseded 24/07/2018
Tasmanian Health, Archived 27/06/2017
Independent Hospital Pricing Authority, Standard 01/11/2012
Commonwealth Department of Health, Standard 16/10/2015
Disability, Standard 13/08/2015
Children and Families, Standard 22/11/2016
Community Services (retired), Standard 06/12/2011
ACT Health, Final 09/08/2018
Definition:Help on this termThe Australian Bureau of Statistics framework for statistical geography. The main purpose of the Australian Statistical Geography Standard (ASGS) is the dissemination of geographically classified statistics. It provides a common framework of statistical geography which enables the publication of statistics that are comparable and spatially integrated.
Context:Help on this termFrom July 2011, the ABS will progressively replace the current Australian Standard Geographical Classification (ASGC) with the Australian Statistical Geography Standard (ASGS) as its geographical framework.
Classification structure:Help on this term

The ASGS classification structures are split into two broads groups, the ABS Structures and the Non-ABS Structures.

The ABS Structures are hierarchies of regions defined and maintained by the ABS. The regions that comprise the ABS Structures will remain unchanged until the next Census of Population and Housing in 2016.

The ABS Structures are built directly from mesh blocks. Non-ABS Structures are approximated by mesh blocks, the Statistical Areas Level 1 (SA1s), or the Statistical Areas Level 2 (SA2s).

The ABS Structures comprise six interrelated hierarchies of regions. They are:

  • Main Structure
  • Indigenous Structure
  • Urban Centres and Localities/Section of State Structure
  • Remoteness Area Structure
  • Greater Capital City Statistical Area (GCCSA) Structure
  • Significant Urban Area Structure.

The Non-ABS Structures comprise eight hierarchies of regions which are not defined or maintained by the ABS, but for which the ABS is committed to providing a range of statistics. They generally represent administrative regions and are approximated by mesh blocks, SA1s or SA2s. They are:

  • Local Government Areas (LGAs)
  • Postal Areas
  • State Suburbs
  • Commonwealth Electoral Divisions
  • State Electoral Divisions
  • Australian Drainage Divisions
  • Natural Resource Management Regions
  • Tourism Regions.

Source and reference attributes

Origin:Help on this term

Australian Bureau of Statistics 2011. 1270.0.55.001 - Australian Statistical Geography Standard (ASGS): Volume 1 - Main Structure and Greater Capital City Statistical Areas, July 2011 http://www.abs.gov.au/AUSSTATS/abs@.nsf/DetailsPage/
1270.0.55.001July%202011?OpenDocument

Canberra: ABS. Viewed on 15/07/2011.

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