Health Minister Natasha Fyles has released a plan to drive down rates of chronic illness in the NT.
“Territorians deserve access to high quality health services and the Government is working to improve the health and wellbeing of Territorians, and to deliver a system that is responsive to the increasing number of people living with chronic conditions,” Ms Fyles said.
“In particular, we are seeking to reduce the burden of chronic disease experienced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people living in regional and remote areas.
“The causes of chronic conditions are complex and varied. The factors impacting rates of disease include how we live and the choices we make, where we live and when and how we access services.”
Ms Fyles said the 2017-2020 implementation plan for the Chronic conditions prevention and management strategy 2010-2020 is the last triennial plan. It will guide health services in supporting people who are at risk of developing chronic conditions and those who are living with chronic conditions.
“We know that prevention is effective and cost-effective. 80% of all heart disease, stroke and type-2 diabetes and 40% of cancers could be prevented if known risk factors were eliminated.
“The Plan has a focus in prevention including addressing the social determinants of health through strengthening collaborative efforts with non-health sector partners.”
Since the launch of the Strategy in 2010, the NT has seen areas of improvement.
There has been a significant increase in health assessments for Aboriginal Territorians between 2006–07 and 2015–16, from 67 to 329 per 1,000 population.
The infant mortality rate has decreased, from 21 per 1,000 live births in 1998–2000 to 13 per 1,000 live births in 2013–2015.
However, there was a 45% decline in age-standardised death rates due to circulatory (heart) disease in the NT from 1998 to 2015 (from 611 to 433 per 100,000 people), this is still the leading cause of death for Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Territorians.
The 2017-2020 implementation plan for the Chronic conditions prevention and management strategy 2010-2020 is available here: http://digitallibrary.health.nt.gov.au/prodjspui/handle/10137/2724
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