Diabetes priorities outlined for State Govt

Monday, 15 March 2021

Each year, as part of budget process, Diabetes NSW & ACT makes a submission to the State Government outlining health priorities for the diabetes community.

After a tumultuous 2020 brought on by the COVID-19 crisis, this year’s submission focused on priorities aimed at delivering positive change to the health and wellbeing of our community.

The three priority areas identified in our Budget submission were:

  1. a greater focus on and investment in preventive health
  2. investment in the earlier diagnosis of diabetes
  3. Investment in services required for people to manage the condition.

Prevention

  •  Diabetes NSW & ACT encouraged the Government to increase expenditure on preventive health. For every dollar spent in preventive health, there is a return of $14.
  • We urged the Government to act on restricting the advertising of unhealthy foods in State-owned spaces, particularly to vulnerable audiences.
  • We also called on the Government to create Health Hubs in targeted areas to provide quality integrated care to reduce the progression of people at risk being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.

Early diagnosis

  • Diabetes NSW & ACT asked the Government to expand HbA1c screening in Emergency Departments throughout local health districts. This is a low-cost, effective intervention that allows for earlier diagnosis, and management, of type 2 diabetes. This in turn decreases the risk of complications and subsequent cost to the health system.
  • We urged the Government to undertake skilling campaigns in our health services, and education campaigns in the community, to lift the recognition of the signs of type 1 diabetes. Hospitalisation rates for children with Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA) have increased nationwide by 14 per cent in five years. We are asking for a health professional team in each region to be equipped with the resources and information needed to increase the recognition and awareness of DKA.
  • We also sought a supported campaign to raise awareness of type 1 diabetes symptoms to reduce the rate of DKA. With many diagnoses occurring in early childhood, it is important that parents are aware of symptoms, especially in their children’s non-verbal years by promoting a ‘4Ts’ campaign to highlight the main symptoms – Toilet, Thirsty, Tired, and Thinner.

Management of diabetes

  •  Diabetes NSW & ACT sought urgent attention to ensure hospitals are able to deal with diabetes as a priority alongside any comorbidities, even when diabetes is not the cause for admission. This is consistently one of the greatest concerns of our members.  Mismanagement of diabetes during a hospital stay prolongs the length of the hospital stay and increases the risk of complications and readmissions.
  • We urged the Government to ensure that any patient admitted to hospital who has diabetes, regardless of the reason for admission, has their needs for diabetes met.  It is essential that a person’s diabetes is treated as a primary condition, even when coexisting with other conditions.
  • Diabetes NSW & ACT also asked the Government to build on the changes to health service delivery that have occurred over the past year, to maintain beneficial e-health and telehealth delivery in regional areas.

If you would like any further information, please contact us at policy@diabetesnsw.com.au

Join our community of over 45,000 people living with diabetes