(Australian Associated Press)
Australian men now have access to a new health website to help address the “national disgrace” of limited funding for desperately needed programs.
“Five men die every hour in Australia from preventable causes and almost five men die by suicide every day,” says David Helmers, CEO of the Australian Men’s Shed Association (AMSA).
The website, www.malehealth.org.au, has access to more than 52 organisations such as beyondblue and The Heart Foundation.
The AMSA-funded Spanner in the Works? site is being launched in Newcastle on Tuesday.
Since the Rudd government launched the National Male Health Policy in 2010 very little had been done to implement it, says Mr Helmers, describing the situation as “a national disgrace”.
“There are plenty of high profile charities raising large amounts of money for men’s health most of which is spent on research and awareness campaigns,” he said.
“What’s the point in raising funds when there is limited funding available for the implementation of grass roots services and action?”
He called for broader male health programs aimed at early detection and prevention, saying the AMSA had put many proposals to both government and the corporate sector for support.
“This project would consist initially of three mobile medical units that can perform male health screening programs in areas of highest need and at major events that attract men.
“This initiative has the potential to save thousands of lives through early detection, all for the cost of half a dozen footy players, but to date no funding has been secured.
“It could be construed that saving bloke’s lives just isn’t a high priority.”
* For support and information about suicide prevention, call Lifeline on 13 11 14 and Suicide Call Back Service 1300 659 467.