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Treating Diabetes And Heart Disease

2 May 2006

Combined Approach To Treating Diabetes And Heart Disease

A three-year quality improvement plan is now in the work programme for the treatment of diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

The plan will see the Ministry of Health, District Health Boards (DHBs) and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) all working together in a collaborative approach.

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) and diabetes are leading causes of death in New Zealand and disproportionately affect Maori and Pacific people and people of low socio economic status. Diabetes and CVD are priorities within the New Zealand Health Strategy. A number of initiatives have already been developed by the country?s District Health Boards (DHBs) and Primary Healthcare Organisations (PHOs). This plan aims to provide a framework for bringing together these various initiatives.

The Ministry has already led the development of the Healthy Eating Healthy Action Strategy which targets the prevention of conditions such as CVD and diabetes. The quality improvement plan for diabetes and cardiovascular disease will complement this strategy.

The Ministry of Health?s Chief Clinical Advisor, Sandy Dawson says ?The quality of care for people with diabetes and cardiovascular disease in New Zealand is amongst the highest in the world but we are always seeking to improve and that?s what this initiative hopes to do.?

The next step is for the Ministry to consult with DHBs and NGOs on the terms of reference for this work. Following this an expert advisory group will be set up to review national diabetes/CVD outcomes, and the process for identifying key priorities for quality improvement.

The New Zealand Society for the Study of Diabetes Annual Conference is being held in Palmerston North on May 3-5.


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