Far West LHD supports Kidney Health Week 2016

Information and Kidney Health check stall in hospital foyer on Thursday, 26 May

The Far West Local Health District is getting behind Kidney Health Week (May 22– 28), Kidney Health Australia’s national awareness week which is urging all Australians to ‘I Kidney Check!’

Approximately 1.7 million Australians have indicators of Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD), yet less than 10% realise they have the condition. Meanwhile, the general population is largely unaware of the critical role the kidneys play in keeping the body healthy and the crucial need to get their kidneys checked every 12 months.

Ms Penny Griffin, Clinical Nurse Consultant Renal Services, said: “We’re getting involved in this campaign to let everyone in the far west know the importance of ‘I Kidney Check’ and to learn about the risk factors and warning signs before it’s too late and they need to go onto dialysis, or get a kidney transplant.”

An ‘I Kidney Check’ information stall will be in the Broken Hill Hospital foyer on Thursday, 26 May from 10am to 12midday. Staff will be providing basic health screening for height, weight, waist, BMI, blood pressure and blood sugar levels along with advice and information about kidney health.

Anne Wilson, CEO Kidney Health Australia, believes the general public needs to be more aware of what their kidneys do.

“The kidneys are vital organs – just like the heart, brain, or lungs – if they shut down, your body shuts down.”

“It is time for Australians to consider ‘I Kidney Check’ and to understand the devastating impact that sick kidneys have on the body. We can also learn about the links between kidney disease and other chronic conditions, such as high blood pressure – one of the most common causes of kidney disease,” said Ms Wilson.

“In fact, approximately 90% of people aged 18-44 with high blood pressure don’t know it.”

“Prevention and early detection is vital, and I encourage all Australians – particularly those at increased risk – to speak to their GP or pharmacist about checking the health of their kidneys before it’s too late,” she added.

In Australia, 60 people die with kidney-related disease every day, and more Australians die with diseases of the kidney and urinary tract each year than from breast cancer, prostate cancer, or even road deaths.

Warning signs of kidney disease:

You can lose up to 90% of kidney function before experiencing any symptoms:

  • High blood pressure
  • Changes in the amount of and frequency urine is passed, colour of urine, or blood in the urine
  • Pain in kidney area
  • Tiredness
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Loss of appetite
  • Headaches and lack of concentration
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Bad breath or metallic taste in the mouth
  • Shortness of breath

For more information about Kidney Health Week, visit www.kidney.org.au or find Kidney Health Australia on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.

Kidney Health Australia, formerly the Australian Kidney Foundation, is a national health care charity with a vision ‘to save and improve the lives of Australians affected by kidney disease’. As the national peak body, Kidney Health Australia promotes good kidney health through delivery of programs in education, advocacy, research and support.


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