Friday, October 29, 2010

An ounce of prevention

This is interesting:

Australia is set to have a national preventative health agency after the federal opposition declared it would support the body if some changes were made...

Prime Minister Julia Gillard said more preventative action on health would take pressure off hospitals.

The agency would coordinate education campaigns and research but it would not be responsible for imposing taxes on junk food, cigarettes and alcohol, Ms Gillard said...

Australian Medical Association President Andrew Pesce said the agency would play a key role in informing and education Australians about getting and staying healthy.

"A growing number of Australians are at high risk of serious diseases and premature death due to excess weight, smoking and excess alcohol use," Mr Pesce said.

"Doctors are seeing the consequences of these problems in their patients every day and much of it can be prevented."

Mr Pesce said the agency, with the support of a doctor on its advisory council, would provide a central focus for evidence on prevention measures and a coordinated national and strategic approach to preventing chronic disease.

The Age, October 26

Spending money on preventing major health issues certainly beats chucking billions into the hospital and pharmaceutical systems after the horse has bolted.

I'll be waiting to hear what this new agency will actually DO. And whether it can make the people it's intended to help begin to take some responsibility for their own health.



Lina said...

Hey! I just started a new health blog. Come and check it out and follow if you like what you see!
blessings, Lina

Debstar said...

My latest assignment is on Type 2 Diabetes. Here are some statistics.
275 people are diagnosed with Diabetes every day of which 85% is Type 2 Diabetes.

$872.1 million is provided to fight Obesity
$449.2 million towards Diabetes. Have you ever seen an advertisement about how to avoid diabetes?
How many people even know what it is or the consequences of getting it?

The government has a report out called Taking Preventative Action.
Just google that if you want to read it all.

The government is doing stuff but it is not working. They could start by banning advertising on alcohol, soft drinks and food high in fats, salt and sugars. How are campaigns such as Measure Up going to work while the airwaves are flooded by ads for all the junk food under the sun. I say forget taxing the individuals who have been brainwashed for years, and go directly to the heart of the problem. BAN ADVERTISING (I know I said it already) - they did it on cigarettes. They're banning it in the UK. So what if the government is getting taxes out of these foods, they are spending all that money, and probably more on our health care system.
Maybe the government could fund some TV shows like the Fat Brides show that is on at the moment, or the one that was on last year where the parents are shown how to change lifestyle and diet for their kids.

I feel so much better now that I've had my vent. Thank you.

Kathryn said...

Good in theory but all they ever seem to do is throw big bucks into some advertising campaign that has everyone going "well der!".

Kek said...

Yep, exactly what I reckon will happen: a lot of talk, some advertising, but the message won't get through to the masses.

Deb, I think you're onto something with the TV thing - perhaps the health dept could come up with a reality TV show or two that might inspire people, the way that Masterchef and the Biggest Loser did.

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