New Project to improve the lives of older people with chronic illness
Mature aged adults living with a chronic illness can look forward to an improved quality of life as a result of the 'Good Life Club' demonstration project, launched today by the Federal Minister for Health and Ageing, Senator Kay Patterson.
22 July 2002
New Project to improve the lives of older people with chronic illnessMature aged adults living with a chronic illness can look forward to an improved quality of life as a result of the 'Good Life Club' demonstration project, launched today by the Federal Minister for Health and Ageing, Senator Kay Patterson.
The "Good Life Club", based at the Whitehorse Division of General Practice in Melbourne, is one of 12 demonstration projects to be funded under the Federal Government's $14.4 million Sharing Health Care Initiative.
Senator Patterson said projects such as the Good Life Club represented a significant step forward in improving the lives of the many hundreds of thousands of Australians who suffer from a chronic condition.
"Studies indicate that more than three million Australians suffer from chronic disease. As the population ages, the problem is shaping up as one of the great health challenges for Australia and the world in the 21st Century," she said.
"Self-management of chronic non-communicable diseases, such as arthritis, respiratory diseases, heart disease, stroke and diabetes has been shown not only to increase self-confidence in sufferers, but also complement medical treatment and rehabilitation.
"The 'Good Life Club' demonstration project is an important part of the platform for the Government's strategy to address this potential health problem. This project can assist mature aged adults with a range of chronic conditions to take more control of their lives and manage their own illness more effectively."
Senator Patterson said the project has a strong focus on people from diverse cultural backgrounds and offers innovative ways to assist people living with chronic illness, including telephone coaches to support club members, to become better self-managers of their chronic conditions.
"The Good Life Club is also developing an interactive web-based education program, which will assist members to access sources of high-quality information to gain a better understanding of their condition," she said.
As with all the Sharing Health Care Initiative demonstration projects the Government is funding, "The Good Life Club" would be evaluated.
The results and experience gained from all the demonstration projects would be absorbed both nationally and internationally and used in formulating future chronic condition policy here and overseas.
"I am very keen to observe the progress of all the demonstration projects around the country working to achieve improved chronic condition prevention and management in Australia," Senator Patterson said.
The first phase of 'The Good Life Club' website was also launched by the Minister today and can be found at www.goodlifeclub.info
Media Contact: Marnie Gaffney, Office of Senator Patterson, 0402 892 871
John Noble, Dept of Health & Ageing 0413 890 241