19 November 2021
This year, Diabetes New Zealand is calling on Kiwis to Step Up For Diabetes during Diabetes Action Month by having regular foot checks to prevent amputations and making the right lifestyle choices to prevent or manage diabetes, which affects over a million New Zealanders.
Earlier this year, the Economic and Social Cost of Type 2 Diabetes report showed that around 600 amputations could be avoided annually in Aotearoa if better foot screening and podiatry services were made available for everyone with type 2 diabetes.
Five-year survival rates following a diabetes-related amputation are low. And around half of amputees are rendered ‘functionally dependent’, placing a huge strain on them, their family, whānau and carers. Avoiding an amputation can therefore increase a person’s life expectancy and quality of life. Amputation rates in Aotearoa also reflect underlying health inequities, with the rate of diabetes-related amputations for Māori being a third higher than for non-Māori.
The Economic and Social Cost of Type 2 Diabetes report was commissioned by Diabetes New Zealand, the Edgar Diabetes and Obesity Research Centre, Healthier Lives–He Oranga Hauora National Science Challenge and philanthropists Tony and Heather Falkenstein. PwC New Zealand produced the report with input from health experts including Healthier Lives Director Jim Mann. It took almost a year to conduct the detailed analyses in the report, which was launched at Parliament by Associate Minister of Health Hon Peeni Henare on 15 March 2021.
For more information about Diabetes Action Month, visit diabetesactionmonth.org.nz
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