Australian Venomous Injury Project

Although their bites are rarely life-threatening, black snakes (genus Pseudechis), such as this red-bellied black snake (Pseudechis porphyriacus) are responsible for a number of hospitalisations every year.

The Australian Venomous Injury Project (AVIP) has been the cornerstone of AVRU’s national data collection and analysis programme since AVRU was founded in 1994. AVIP provides a national snapshot of all types of venom-related injuries, from ants, bees, wasps and spiders through to venomous snakes, freshwater and marine fish and jellyfish. Over the past three years, Dr Ronelle Welton has rejuvenated AVIP and developed new national databases to accommodate public hospital admission records (AIHW 2001-), cause of death unit record files (AIHW COD URF 2006-) and coronial datasets (NCIS 2000-). These data have been integrated into a geospatial analysis system based on the ArcGIS platform, and combined with data from other sources to enable interpolation with remoteness structures, socioeconomic regions, primary health networks, road accessibility, hospital locations, urban centres and indigenous lands. This system provides a baseline geostatistical analysis of trends and correlations among envenoming-related injuries resulting in death and hospitalization in Australia’s population (between 2000-2013), and the extent to which envenoming may be concentrated in certain populations based on socioeconomic, remoteness, age, sex and other parameters.