THE HON MARK BUTLER MP
Minister for Mental Health and Ageing
THE HON WARREN SNOWDON MP
Minister for Indigenous Health
GAI BRODTMANN MP
Member for Canberra
14 July 2011
More than a million Australians with diabetes will benefit from improved services and information following a five year extension of the National Diabetes Services Scheme (NDSS).
Acting Minister for Health and Ageing Mark Butler welcomed the new $1 billion investment through Diabetes Australia as a huge boost of support to diabetes sufferers.
“This is great news for over a million Australians with diabetes who will now have access to over 4 million products annually that will help them to effectively self-manage their condition.
“For a long time, the scheme has successfully played an essential role in providing Australians with type 1, type 2, gestational and other diabetes access to timely, reliable and affordable products and services,” Mr Butler said
“The new agreement will also boost services for the newly-diagnosed, children and their families, culturally and linguistically diverse communities, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and disadvantaged communities.
“For example, for the first time Australians using Byetta will be able to access subsidised needles through the scheme.
“Diabetes Australia will also receive funding to run a survey of youth to identify risky behaviours for young people living with diabetes with the aim of developing materials to assist health professionals to openly discuss these behaviours with young people.
“The NDSS is a world class scheme of which we are very proud and I’m very pleased to be announcing its extension in National Diabetes Awareness Week.”
Minister for Indigenous Health Warren Snowdon welcomed the news that services will also be expanded for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.
“Given that diabetes is responsible for 12 per cent of the health gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians, its important that Indigenous Australians can access the scheme and understand what the scheme offers,” Mr Snowdon said.
“This new agreement will see Aboriginal health workers trained to improve awareness of the scheme in Indigenous communities.”
Member for Canberra, Gai Brodtmann MP joined representatives from Diabetes Australia at an event in the national capital to welcome the new funding.
“A child or adult with diabetes can have every aspect of their lives affected – whether it is the regular testing, treatment for complications, or related illnesses or disabilities,” Ms Brodtmann said.
“The new and improved scheme will devote over $1 billion over the next 5 years to provide some 4.5 million products each year, including items like blood glucose test strips, syringes and needles for insulin and blood glucose lowering injectable medications, and insulin pump consumables.”
These improvements follow consultations with key stakeholders, including state and territory diabetes organisations, the Pharmacy Guild of Australia, the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and manufacturers of diabetes products.
Mr Butler also announced that following a competitive tender process, a consortium of key diabetes and health care agencies, led by the internationally renowned McKinsey and Company, has been selected to manage the 3 year Coordinated Care for Diabetes pilot to assess the effectiveness of coordinated care for patients with diabetes.
For all media inquiries, please contact the Minister’s Office on 02 6277 7220