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New language policy on diabetes

Diabetes Australia calls for more sensitive discussion of the condition

Health professionals should refrain from referring to diabetes as a 'disease' and describing people living with the condition as 'diabetics' or 'sufferers', according to a new position statement from Diabetes Australia and the Australian Medical Association. Releasing their statement recently the bodies called for greater awareness and more sensitivity in the way health professionals, and the media, talks about diabetes. Diabetes Australia CEO Lewis Kaplan said the statement was developed by a multidisciplinary working group and highlighted the implications of certain words and phrases often used to describe diabetes, which can be harmful and inaccurate. Foundation director of the Australian Centre for Behavioural Research in Diabetes Professor Jane Speight said health professionals commonly use words like 'non-compliant' or 'poorly controlled' without realising the damage that such language can do. Go to www.diabetesaustralia.com.au

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