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Federal Parliamentarians get their eyes checked to mark World Diabetes Day and the “Eyes on Diabetes” campaign to prevent blindness

Over 25 federal MP’s and Senators had their eyes checked at Parliament House on 23 November using a special camera which photographs the retina to enable early detection of diabetes-related damage to the eyes.

The event was co-sponsored by two Parliamentary Friends Groups - the Diabetes group co-chaired by Rowan Ramsay MP and Graham Perrett MP; and the Eye Health and Vision Care group co-chaired by Hon Amanda Rishworth MP and Dr Andrew Laming MP (who is also an eye specialist). Minister for Health Hon Sussan Ley MP spoke at the event.

New “Eyes on Diabetes” campaign highlights the risk of diabetes eye disease

This year for World Diabetes Day (November 14) the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) is leading a new “Eyes on Diabetes” campaign to highlight the risk of diabetes eye disease that leads to blindness.

Diabetes Australia CEO A/Professor Greg Johnson said the IDF estimated that worldwide 415 million people have diabetes and 93 million of these have diabetic retinopathy, a complication of diabetes that leads to blindness.

People in regional and remote Australia up to 11 times more likely to have toes or feet amputated as a result of diabetes

Following the recent release of research showing there are an estimated 4,400 diabetes-related amputations performed in Australia annually, hospital data shows people living in regional and remote parts of Australia are up to 11 times more likely to be hospitalised for diabetes-related amputations than people living in affluent metropolitan areas.

A/Professor Greg Johnson said the regional amputations data, gathered by the Australian Com-mission on Safety and Quality in Health Care, showed the clear need for the Australian Government, and the states and territories, to collaborate to implement a Diabetes Amputation Prevention Initiative.

Revised ‘Assessing Fitness to Drive’ guidelines 2016 released

For the past few years there has been great concern about the national guidelines being used to assess fitness to drive for people with diabetes.

Diabetes Australia and our state and territory member organisations have led the way on advocating changes to these guidelines on behalf of all people with diabetes to make sure they only address aspects directly affecting someone’s ability to drive.

We are very pleased to advise that, from 1 October 2016, revised and clearer guidelines will help Australians with diabetes and their healthcare teams decide if it is safe to drive.

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