Diabetes remains one of the most significant health challenges for western Sydney.
Many Lions and Leos clubs of Lions District 201N5 including Blacktown City and Cherrybrook have come together to tackle the diabetes epidemic.
A free community forum is being held on Thursday, June 2 from 6.00pm – 9.00 pm at Blacktown Workers Club, 55 Campbell St, Blacktown, in collaboration with Western Sydney Diabetes (WSD) and supported by Blacktown City Council, Blacktown Workers Club and Western Sydney Primary Health Network.
Learn more from the experts about:
• Early detection with a HbA1c test;
• Lifestyle – diet, exercise, and nature;
• GP Management Plan;
• Specialist service with an Endocrinologist; and
• Diabetes distress and mental health.
Lions District 201N5’s Diabetes Chair, Mohan Nanayakkara, said in line with the Lions Clubs International (LCI) a key global cause is to reduce the prevalence of diabetes and improve the lives of those with diabetes.
“Learning how to prevent or control diabetes will save money and time and help hospitals with fewer emergencies and visits as well,” Mr Nanayakkara said.
WSD Diabetes Preventions Officer Aruni Ratnayake said Blacktown and Mount Druitt’s large proportion of residents with diabetes is due to poor lifestyle choices.
According to WSD, diabetes screening at the Blacktown and Mount Druitt hospital Emergency Departments in 2017 showed alarming rates of 17 per cent of people with diabetes and 29 per cent having pre-diabetes.
WSD endocrinologist and presenter, Dr Rona Francisco, said it is estimated that 15 per cent of residents (129,000 people) have diabetes. “In addition, 35 per cent of the local population (301,000 people) are at ‘high risk of type 2 diabetes with pre-diabetes or high blood glucose,” Dr Francisco said.
Blacktown City Mayor Tony Bleasdale said greater awareness of diabetes was essential, especially in western Sydney. “We are committed to diabetes awareness and the promotion of healthy lifestyles to help tackle the scourge of diabetes in our city,” he said.
WSD is encouraging anyone who is at high risk to go to their GP and get tested for a free HbA1c test.
Free registration: www.eventbrite.com.au/e/free-diabetes-awarenessforum-tickets-328505166797