Climbing to new heights for diabetes awareness

​​Last month St John Fisher College teacher, Michele Tillack was selected amongst others Type 1 diabetics to climb the Story Bridge to mark Diabetes Awareness Week.

Having lived with Type 1 diabetes for 21 years, Michele said, “Having diabetes means there are bridges to climb every day, but this time it’s a real bridge not a figurative one!”  

“I was honoured and excited to be a part of this experience”. 

“The bridge climb demonstrated that diabetics, with careful and constant self-management, can participate in life to its fullest,” she remarked.

In Australia, there are approximately 1.7 million diabetics with approximately 10% of those having the autoimmune, Type 1.

Michele’s wish is for government to extend their subsidy for Constant Glucose Monitors (CGMs) for all Type 1 diabetics and not limit it to those under 21 years of age and those with valid concessional status and high clinical needs.

“At $349 per month, CGMs are prohibitive to many, even though CGMs have been clinically proven to provide better health outcomes regarding morbidity and mortality for Type 1’s”.

“Private health insurance does not cover this either and it is my hope that by raising awareness, the government will take action to allow greater access to this fantastic technology”, Michele said.

 “I think what people need to understand is having diabetes required continual daily management with no vacations from what can be a very tolling disease”.

“It is my hope that by raising awareness, the public and government will take proper action.”

A full moon provided the climbers with a perfect backdrop with the bridge structure illuminated in blue to mark diabetes awareness.