The coronavirus caught us all by surprise.
Initially, there was little known about the risk for people living with diabetes and there was uncertainty about how they could get health support while isolating.
As ever, our first priority was finding ways to support the diabetes community across Western Australia. We quickly adapted our services so that whoever needed help could get it quickly, conveniently and safely from the comfort of their home – wherever they live.
Western Australians living with diabetes need your support now more than ever.
In the first few weeks, enquiries to our Helpline and Telehealth service almost doubled. We were able to provide the latest diabetes management advice and information about coronavirus through our team .
To make our services as accessible as possible we:
- extended our Helpline hours until 8pm weeknights;
- introduced a call-back service for added convenience;
- extended the Telehealth clinical appointment service to cover metropolitan areas as well as regional areas;
- added repeat orders for home delivery of products through our online shop;
- delivered our workshops through webinars;
- launched the new online program MyDESMOND to provide type 2 self-management support;
- and launched a state-wide advertising campaign to reach the most vulnerable.
The long-term impact of coronavirus is still not known, but we understand from the diabetes community that it caused significant anxiety and prevented many from accessing their normal care. We are now concerned that those people who didn’t seek the urgent care they may have needed may require additional support to avoid complications.
Although the threat of COVID-19 has reduced, diabetes is the silent pandemic which continues to impact our communities. Over the period of the COVID-19 crisis, around 1500 people were newly diagnosed with diabetes in WA. Supporting the growing diabetes community through the impact of COVID-19 is just the latest reason why Diabetes WA’s services are essential to many of the 130,000 people living with diabetes in WA.
Your gift this financial year will ensure we can continue to provide our services wherever and whenever they are needed.