#itsabouttime we detected diabetes earlier

This year’s theme for National Diabetes Week (8-14 July) – It’s About Time – aims to raise awareness about the importance of early detection and treatment of all types of diabetes. Too many Australians are being diagnosed with diabetes too late, which is putting their lives at risk. But, help is here.

Canberra-based biotech start-up, MyHealthTest has developed a convenient, more affordable way for people to test the key indicator of type 2 diabetes – HbA1c – in their own homes. MyHealthTest is a pathology company, which offers people the convenience of being able to collect their own blood samples at home, and access their results online. And, not only does the test indicate type 2 diabetes risk, it can help to measure, manage and monitor it.

With a simple finger prick test that measures average blood glucose levels over a 2-3 month period, the test helps monitor diabetes by providing an overall picture of blood glucose levels – HbA1c. For people with diabetes keeping HbA1c levels in the range recommended by their doctor reduces the risk of developing serious complications such as amputations, blindness, kidney failure, heart attack and stroke.

MyHealthTest is soon releasing tests for thyroid conditions, prostate cancer and cholesterol.

The Australian Government has provided support to MyHealthTest through grant funding from Accelerating Commercialisation. MyHealthTest used this funding to help commercialise its direct-to-consumer pathology service. It also received support via the government’s Innovation Connections, which placed two researchers and a graduate with MyHealthTest to help it develop its concept. MyHealthTest is currently undertaking a project under the Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) Projects stream of the overarching CRC program.

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