• 1 in 6

    adults are at risk of developing type 2 diabetes

  • 1.4 million

    Australians have diabetes

  • 311

    Australians develop diabetes every day

  • 1 person

    every 5 minutes will develop diabetes

  • Every year

    around 8,000 South Australians are diagnosed with diabetes

  • 180,000

    South Australians are at risk of developing type 2 diabetes which is largely preventable

  • Type 2

    diabetes is the most common type of diabetes in Australia (87% of all people with diabetes)

  • Over 1.2 million

    people in Australia have type 2 diabetes


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Each year around 8,000 South Australians are diagnosed with diabetes

The number of people diagnosed with diabetes in South Australia has doubled since 2001. Over the last 12 months, more than 8,000 people were diagnosed with diabetes, and the majority have type 2 diabetes. The breakdown by type of diabetes is: 89% type 2 diabetes, 8% type 1 diabetes, 2.5% gestational diabetes, and 0.5% 'other' types of diabetes.

More men have diabetes than women in South Australia (7.1% men and 6.2% women). The likelihood of developing diabetes increases with age. In South Australia diabetes rates increased by over 20% between 44 and 75 years of age for men, with slower but steady growth for women of 11% between the same age range. Overall rates of diabetes occurring in older people have increased by almost 3% since 2001. It is well known that type 2 diabetes can be prevented in many cases through healthy lifestyle changes. The numbers we are seeing today have the potential to change in the future.


180,000 South Australians are at risk of developing type 2 diabetes which is largely preventable

South Australia and the Northern Territory have the highest rates of diabetes (6.5%) within Australia. Undiagnosed diabetes affects 30% of South Australians, and a further 16% (180,000) aged over 25 years, are estimated to have pre-diabetes.

Being overweight or obese is one of the main risk factors for developing type 2 diabetes. Overweight adults are over two times more likely to develop diabetes than those of a healthy weight. Obese adults are almost five times more likely to develop diabetes than those of a healthy weight. Sixty-nine percent of South Australians are overweight or obese. Eighty-five percent do not meet physical activity guidelines, 93% do not eat enough vegetables, and 51% do not eat enough fruit. Forty percent drink excessive amounts of alcohol on single occasions putting them at higher risk, and 12% are daily smokers. These health risk factors contribute to the development of type 2 diabetes and other serious health conditions. Living a healthy lifestyle, and reaching or maintaining a healthy weight through eating a healthy diet and exercising, can prevent or delay type 2 diabetes.

Act now to reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Diabetes SA is trialling a free diabetes prevention program (AUS2PREVENT) that supports people to make dietary and lifestyle changes that can help prevent or delay the development of type 2 diabetes. Click here for more information https://www.diabetessa.com.au/Web/AUS2PREVENT.aspx


38% of diabetes related hospital admissions in South Australia last more than three days

The average cost for acute admissions across public hospitals is $4,680 per person per year. There were over 20,000 elective admissions in 2015-16 for diabetes complications, and almost 40,000 emergency admissions.

In metro-Adelaide, hospital admissions related to diabetes are higher in the outer northern and southern suburbs. These areas have higher rates of diabetes. People living in rural South Australia are 33% more likely to be admitted to hospital with related diabetes issues, compared to those living in metropolitan Adelaide. Rates for emergency admissions related to complications of diabetes are also higher in regional SA. Managing blood glucose levels with the support of your healthcare team can decrease or prevent the need for hospital care.


A credentialled diabetes educator can provide you with information and support to manage your blood glucose levels, and reduce your risk of long-term complications

Many people with type 2 diabetes may have elevated blood glucose levels for weeks, and even several years before their diagnosis. The best way to reduce your risk of developing diabetes complications is to get an early diagnosis and seek support to maintain blood glucose levels within your target range.

If your blood glucose levels are not well managed, you may experience long-term complications such as damage to the small blood vessels to the eyes, kidneys, and nerves, causing blindness, kidney damage, and nerve damage. High blood glucose levels can also damage the large blood vessels to the heart, brain, and lower limbs leading to heart disease, stroke, and lower limb amputation. Getting support from a credentialled diabetes educator to manage your blood glucose levels, will help prevent or manage diabetes-related complications. A dietitian can help you develop dietary strategies and offer nutrition advice, and an exercise physiologist can help you manage your diabetes through exercise. A podiatrist, optometrist, and audiologist can also help prevent and detect complications early. Talk to your GP about who best can support you in your management of diabetes.

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