Media Releases

Leading health bodies urge older Australians with diabetes to protect themselves and their community with a flu vaccination

Diabetes Australia and the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) have joined forces to encourage more than 650,000 Australians with diabetes aged over 65 to receive a flu vaccination, after a nightmare 2017 flu season claimed more than 1000 lives.

Diabetes Australia CEO Professor Greg Johnson urged Australians to heed the warnings after last year’s flu season and get a flu shot this year.

“All Australians with diabetes should get the flu shot, but older Australians are at a higher risk of severe flu and even death,” Professor Johnson said.

“This year, the Australian Government is funding two new enhanced flu vaccines for over-65s, as well as the regular flu shot that is available free to all Australians with diabetes.”

Gestational diabetes – the epidemic posing an immediate threat to thousands of pregnancies, and a future threat to the health of mothers, babies and families

Health experts today warned of the alarming increase in gestational diabetes which in the past 12 months has affected 38,000 Australian women during pregnancy.

“In the last ten years, more than 200,000 women have developed gestational diabetes. Latest projections show that over the next decade more than 500,000 women could develop gestational diabetes during pregnancy,” said Professor Greg Johnson, CEO of Diabetes Australia.

New campaign to reduce epidemic of diabetes-related amputations

Australia’s diabetes experts gathered in Sydney this weekend to discuss bold new plans to dramatically reduce the number of diabetes-related amputations in Australian hospitals every year.

Diabetes Australia CEO Professor Greg Johnson said there were around 4,400 amputations performed in Australian hospitals every year - and up to 85 per cent of these could be prevented.

“The number of diabetes-related amputations of toes, feet and limbs is a national tragedy and we need to do more as a community to save limbs, to save lives and to save hospital budgets,” Professor Johnson said.

“Diabetes-related amputations cost the Australian health system around $875 million per year. On top of this, there is a huge personal cost to the individual and their family.”

Diabetes is associated with anxiety symptoms

Research shows that moderate-to-severe anxiety symptoms, an indication of a potential anxiety disorder, affect one in five people with insulin-treated type 2 diabetes and one in six with type 1 diabetes or non-insulin treated type 2 diabetes.

Dr Adriana Ventura, Research Fellow at the Australian Centre for Behavioural Research in Diabetes (ACBRD) and registered psychologist, who conducted the study, says the prevalence of elevated anxiety symptoms and disorders in people with diabetes is within the range of general population estimates. However, having anxiety and diabetes poses additional challenges.

Diabetes Australia calls for a health levy on sugary drinks

Diabetes Australia supports the introduction of a health levy on sugar sweetened drinks to help combat Australia’s obesity epidemic and reduce the number of people developing type 2 diabetes.

New research released today has found that increased sugary drink consumption can increase the risk of type 2 diabetes independent of weight gain or obesity.

Most previous research suggests that increased sugary drink consumption led to weight gain that then led to type 2 diabetes. But an Australian National University led study of 40,000 adults showed the more sugary drinks consumed, the higher the risk of type 2 diabetes independent of weight gain and obesity.

New research suggests a bigger type 2 diabetes risk from sugary drinks

New research shows that sugary drinks sold in Australia have over 20 per cent more glucose compared to those sold in the United States.

The research from the Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute compared the sugar content of sugary drinks in Australia, Europe and the U.S. The higher proportion of glucose relate to different sweeteners used in sugary drinks (sugar cane in Australia, corn syrup in the US and sugar beet in Europe).

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