NATIONAL MEN’S HEALTH WEEK
It was a great honour to be able to help launch National Men’s Health Week today at Parliament House in Canberra with the Governor General, His Excellency General the Hon Sir Peter Cosgrove; Professor John Macdonald, the Director of the Men’s Health Information and Resource Centre; the Hon Greg Hunt MP Minister for Health and Minister for Sport; the Hon Catherine King MP, the Shadow Minister for Health; and the Hon Warren Snowdon MP, the Assistant Shadow Minister for Indigenous Health.
Men’s Health Week is an annual campaign held in June each year and the theme for this year is Healthy Body Healthy Mind – Keeping the Balance. As Labor’s Men’s Health Ambassador I was proud to host the National Male Health Forum in March, a Solomon Male Health Forum and have helped organise tomorrow’s Men’s Health Expo in Raintree Park Darwin.
The Territory has some unique challenges in men’s health. Our indicators are worse than the national averages. Recent national data from the ABS shows that:
- Men were 10 per cent less likely to have visited a GP in the last three months
- Men were twice as likely to have not visited a health professional at all in the last twelve months
- Men were nearly three times less likely to have discussed safe sexual practices with a GP in the last twelve months
- Men were four times less likely to have discussed family planning with a GP in the last twelve months
- Suicide is the leading cause of death for men under the age of 54 – exceeding the national road toll
- Men also have unique issues particular chronic diseases, and
- The incidence of coronary heart disease and acute coronary events is 1.7 times as high in men as in women.
One of the main points constantly raised in discussions on men’s health is the need for better communication and access to professional advice, as well as the need to work on educating men about health issues during different stages of their life. Tomorrow’s expo should help to achieve some of this and I urge Territory males of all ages to call in and access some great expertise and information:
MEN’S HEALTH EXPO
RAINTREE PARK, DARWIN CITY
TOMORROW – WEDNESDAY 14 JUNE 2017
11AM TO 4PM