Type 2 diabetes on the rise in remote areas
Image: Anna Blackie, Credentialed Diabetes Educator.
Rates of type 2 diabetes are two and a half times higher in remote and very remote areas compared with major cities, according to an Australian Institute of Health and Wellbeing (AIHW) report.
Anna Blackie, Marathon Health Diabetes Educator, says lifestyle choices and lack of education regarding diabetes are huge contributing factors to the continually increasing numbers.
“There are many factors that contribute to the rising rates of diabetes, but there are things that people can do in their own lives to reduce their risk or manage their diabetes.
People over the age of 40 years should be assessed for diabetes risk every three years, or tested for diabetes annually if known to have pre-diabetes. Diabetes risk assessments should start from 18 years of age for Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander peoples who are known to develop the condition at a younger age,” Ms Blackie said.
In line with World Diabetes Day, marked every year on 14 November, Marathon Health’s diabetes management and support program aims to raise awareness around living with diabetes, as well as provide adults diagnosed with diabetes access to specialist services.
“Getting the right education is key. With the theme of World Diabetes Day this year centred on nurses it highlights the need and role of your healthcare team who are specially trained to help people with diabetes live well,” Ms Blackie said.
Marathon Health’s diabetes management and support team aim to reduce the impact of type 2 diabetes within regional and remote communities.
“We encourage people to talk to their GP about their diabetes risk and the practical things they may be able to do to reduce that risk”, Ms Blackie said.
World Diabetes Day aims to raise global awareness about diabetes and its effect on the world as a critical health issue. Globally, 463 million people were living with diabetes in 2019 – this is expected to rise to 578 million by 2030.