The peak body for wound prevention and management, Wounds Australia, has launched its largest ever public health campaign to raise awareness of the nation’s ‘hidden epidemic’ of chronic wounds.
Dr Bill McGuiness one of Australias Leading wound researchers joins dave to look at the topic.
Figures released by Wounds Australia on the opening day of Wound Awareness Week 2021 shows $3 billion is spent annually on wound treatment in hospitals, clinical settings and aged care facilities.
Wounds Australia Chair Hayley Ryan said the impact of chronic wounds on Australia
was “massive”, despite the problems being largely unknown.
“Over 420,000 people suffer from chronic wounds each year and they will spend an
average of $340 per month on dressings and painkillers.
“Chronic wounds also damage mental health. They stop people from working,
studying and enjoying activities others take for granted.
“However, the solution to chronic wounds for thousands of Australians is bleeding
“By simply knowing the warning signs and understanding who is at risk, chronic wounds
can be avoided or be quickly healed by talking to a healthcare professional.
“While anyone at any time can be afflicted by a chronic wound, older Australians and
people with health complications are most likely to suffer. Sadly, they are also the
people who are least able to afford treatment.
Warning signs that an ordinary wound has become a chronic wound include:
• taking more than a month to heal or returning for no apparent reason
• pain and Heat
• an unpleasant Odour
• a thick, yellowish fluid.
The greatest risk factors are people who are:
• over 65 years
• suffering from chronic diseases like diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and renal
• struggling with poor mobility
Healthcare professionals qualified to give advice and treatment include:
• Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Workers
• Diabetes Educators
• Some physiotherapists, occupational therapists and dieticians.