Australia: New Initiative to Tackle Diabetes Epidemic

Australia will develop a new national strategy to tackle the nation's diabetes epidemic, announced Australian Minister for Health. This initiative has been made as part of the Opening Ceremony of the World Diabetes Congress 2013 at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre.

The International Diabetes Federation President, Sir Michael Hirst, and Professor Paul Zimmet, who will co-chair the strategy Expert Advisory Group will be available for comment at 8am tomorrow as part of the World Diabetes Congress opening press conference in room 104 of the Melbourne Convention Centre.

Statement from the International Diabetes Federation (IDF)

“The International Diabetes Federation (IDF) welcomes this powerful initiative. We would like to congratulate The Hon Peter Dutton for his commitment to set up this Diabetes Task Force.

This is one of the first governments to make such a such a public commitment to attacking the pandemic of diabetes. It will place Australia as a firm ally to IDF and the thousands of healthcare professionals, researchers and their patients who live with diabetes every day.

Professor Paul Zimmet and The Hon. Judi Moylan who will co-Chair the Advisory Group for the strategy are outstanding experts in their field and will play an invaluable role in strategy development.

Coming at the start of our Congress in Melbourne with over 10,000 delegates from more than 200 countries, including many parliamentarians and representatives of governments, it sets an example that many countries should follow.

This is a tribute to the unstinting work of those in Australia who have raised the disease and the issues at very possible opportunity.

IDF on behalf of the world diabetes community will watch the progress of this taskforce. We hope that we will learn lessons that can be used in other countries. The eyes of the diabetes world will be on Australia.”