How can we help country people with diabetes?

Psychology PhD researcher Laura Jones.

Psychology PhD researcher Laura Jones.
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Thursday, 12 February 2009

People in rural South Australia suffering from Type 2 diabetes are being invited to take part in a new University of Adelaide study that aims to better understand their difficulties of managing diabetes.

The study - which focuses on how country people cope with Type 2 diabetes and the kind of information and care they receive - is believed to be the first of its kind in Australia and one of the few of its kind in the world.

Funded by SA Health, the study aims to help improve the plight of diabetes sufferers in country SA.

"Type 2 diabetes is a huge problem in the community - it is one of the top 10 causes of death in Australia, and the incidence of Type 2 diabetes is increasing in all age groups," says the study's coordinator, University of Adelaide Psychology PhD student Laura Jones.

"We know that in urban areas there are many challenges for people trying to manage their diabetes, and this study gives researchers the chance to gain a greater understanding of the unique challenges facing country residents.

"Differences in lifestyle, access to information such as nutritional information, and availability and quality of care are just some of the issues that play an important part in people's ability to manage diabetes.

"By better understanding the specific issues for country people, and by evaluating current policies and guidelines, this study hopes to inform improvements in services, information and management for sufferers in rural areas," says Ms Jones, 24, who hails from Murray Bridge.

There are two key stages to the study. The first stage will involve recruiting a small number of country South Australians with diabetes to take part in group discussions and individual phone interviews.

The second stage involves using a questionnaire to gain a much greater understanding of people's experiences with diabetes in the country. This questionnaire will be sent to hundreds of country residents and will be informed by the group discussion.

"We'd like to hear from as many people as possible - those who would either like to take part in the group discussion or interview, or who would like to fill out the questionnaire when it is available," Ms Jones says.

To register your interest, phone Laura Jones on 0407 392 824 or (08) 8313 0461, or email her at:


Contact Details

Ms Laura Jones
PhD student
School of Psychology
The University of Adelaide
Business: +61 8 8313 3850
Mobile: 0400 258 687

Mr David Ellis
Deputy Director, Media and Corporate Relations
External Relations
The University of Adelaide
Business: +61 8 8313 5414
Mobile: +61 (0)421 612 762