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Monday, 26 November 2012
Page: 13093


Ms HALL (ShortlandGovernment Whip) (11:03): I move:

That this House:

(1) promises to remember all children with type 1 diabetes; and

(2) notes that 100 young Australians with type 1 diabetes will be in Parliament House on 29 November 2012 as part of Kids in the House.

This week the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation will be bringing in 100 young Australians living with type 1 diabetes to Parliament House to meet with federal members of parliament and to raise awareness and gain support for young people with type 1 diabetes. Dane Boyd, from Shortland electorate, will be one of those young people. Dane and his mother, Kim, walked with me on 18 November in the JDRF Walk to Cure from Warners Bay to Speers Point in Lake Macquarie.

The 100 young people living with juvenile diabetes will also be accompanied by their families, leading diabetes scientists and high-profile individuals that have been affected by type 1 diabetes to hear personal accounts of their experiences of living with type 1 diabetes and of how it affects all elements of their lives such as school, hobbies and at home. Type 1 diabetes is very common. In fact, one of my staff, Mark, has a grandchild who has type 1 diabetes and has experienced many difficulties over a long period of time. Talking to him has shown me the challenges that those young people face.

The Kids in the House event will be widely supported by all members of parliament because it transcends our political philosophies. We all know that these children need our help and support. Type 1 diabetes—or juvenile diabetes, as it is often called—is a lifelong autoimmune disease. It strikes both children and adults, but it is most common in children and it is usually diagnosed before the age of 15. It is the most common chronic disease in children. Approximately 1,825 Australians are diagnosed with type 1 diabetes each year. That shows just how significant it is. The incidence is increasing by 3.2 per cent per year. The disease is not fully understood, but there is cutting-edge research and each day we hope there will be a cure found for this disease. The body's immune system mistakenly attacks and destroys the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas, removing a person's ability to produce insulin.

People with type 1 diabetes take multiple insulin injections daily and test their blood sugar level by pricking their finger for blood four or more times a day. The insulin pump has been quite a breakthrough that has helped a number of young people. Mark's granddaughter is one of the young people who has recently had an insulin pump installed and has benefited enormously from that. The destructive disease is not caused by lifestyle or diet. That is a misconception a number of people have. It cannot be prevented and there is no cure. Ninety-five per cent of all children under the age of 18 with diabetes will have type 1 diabetes. Insulin allows a person to stay alive; it does not cure it. Australia has one of the highest rates of type 1 diabetes in the world. Over 122,000 Australians live with this difficult disease, which represents about 10 to 15 per cent of all people with diabetes. The number of people diagnosed with type 1 diabetes has increased by an enormous 37 per cent in the last decade. The majority are children and young adults.

This motion is important. This motion gives members of both sides of the House the opportunity to show their support for the children who will be visiting parliament this week. I pledge my support for all children suffering with type 1 diabetes and guarantee that I will do all within my power to support and assist them. (Time expired)