Diabetes Australia is a national non for profit organization that deals with all types of Diabetes. You could think of it as the equivalent (although unrelated) to the American Diabetes Association here in Australia. More importantly for people with D, this organisation is in charge of administering the National Diabetes Services Scheme (NDSS) that provides subsidized testing strips and other consumables.
Like many of its international counterparts, Diabetes Australia is organized in chapters or member organizations, usually one per every state. An interesting tension has always existed amongst different member organizations over issues such as branding and spending priorities. It seems now the issue has become too big and half the state branches have now split.
Accoording to a report published in the Brisbane Times, “the national organisation has been plunged into disarray with a walkout by the NSW, South Australia and Northern Territory branches and the resignation of the national president, Gary Deed, and the chief executive, Matt O’Brien, in recent days.”
The three organisations have said that “they would welcome the establishment of a new body to replace the national organisation.”
So, is this the end of Diabetes Australia? How will Australians with D be able to maintain access to the NDSS which provides $750million of funding over the next 3 years? How will the lack of a national representing body affect the care and advocacy of Diabetes in Australia?