Baby boomers face a bleak health future if they don’t face up to some home truths, about now. Figures from Australian Government and industry research show an alarming rate of preventable health issues are on the rise, often causing early disability and death, among Australia’s 5.4 million baby boomers.
The Australian Government recognises the importance of preventative health for baby boomers and their families, and supports a range of free screening and health checks that many boomers are unaware of, putting their own health, and that of their parents and children, at unnecessary risk.
Sure, we are all just too busy, but boomers need to consider that giving themselves and their families peace of mind this Christmas, and making a couple of appointments to get checked out in the New Year, could really be worth it.
Here is a list of some of the free, and low cost, preventative health measures baby boomers can take now to help reduce the pain later, compiled by babyboomers.com.au from information sourced from the Australian Government, not-for-profit organisations, and contacts within health peak bodies.
Breast Screen Australia
Primarily recommended for women 50 – 69 years, who have no current symptoms, BreastScreen Australia services provide FREE screening to all women over 40. It is recommended that women between the ages of 50 – 69 be screened every 2 years.
For more information about the Mammogram go to:
To Book a Free screening Mammogram call 13 20 50 from anywhere in Australia (every two years)
(Also see our Preventative Health pages on babyboomers.com.au for more information and links about Cancer).
Pap (Smear) Tests – National Cervical Screening Program
The Australian Government recommends all women aged between 18 and 70 years who have ever been sexually active should have a Pap test every two years. This includes women who have had the cervical cancer vaccine.
For more information, and links to State registers go to:
Or Phone: 13 15 56 (for the cost of a local call)
National Bowel Cancer Screening Program – in the privacy of your own home
‘The National Bowel Cancer Screening Program offers Australians, who turn 50 years of age between January 2008 and December 2010, and those turning 55 or 65 between July 2008 and December 2010 a free home test kit.’
‘Bowel cancer kills over 80 Australians each week and we know that bowel cancer screening can cut these deaths down by a third. For more information go to:
or call the Cancer Helpline on 13 11 20.
GetScreened.com.au for Colon (Bowel) Cancer
Bowel cancer treated at an early stage can usually be cured. At least 1 in 22 Australians will develop bowel cancer during their lifetime (1 in 18 men and 1 in 24 women), and more than 12,000 new cases occur each year, according to the Colorectal Foundation.
For more information and ‘am I at risk’ go to:
Do you Measure up? campaign
According to Australian Government Statistics, 1 in 2 Australian adults is overweight. The website provides you with a number of free tools to help you lose weight, particularly where it counts – around your waist, including a 12 week planner, a tape measure for men and one for women, and plenty of free information about how to achieve your preventative health goals. You can even share your own tips as you go at: http://www.measureup.gov.au/internet/abhi/publishing.nsf/Content/What+tips+do+other+people+have
To find out how to measure yourself, and for the free 12 week planner, go to:
Other tests Boomers should consider are:
Coronary Artery Disease – recommended for people aged over 45 years
Glaucoma – recommended first check age 40 years
(Boomers need to speak to their doctor about arranging any of the other tests above, and ask whether they are covered by Medicare or Bulk Billing.)
Other Free Health Services
Medicare Teen Dental Vouchers – Preventative Dental Checks
If you are a teenager aged 12 – 17 years and are eligible, the Australian Government will enable you to receive a free Preventative Dental Check through Medicare.
The voucher entitles you to a number of services for free, so for eligibility, and information about how it works go to:
Or call 132 011,
Medical Interpreting Services for non-English Speaking Australian Citizens
The Australian Government will provide free interpreting services for non-English speaking citizens who wish to see a private medical practitioner providing Medicare-rebateable services, or pharmacies for the purposes of dispensing PBS medications.
For more information go to:
For further information on health issues specific to Baby Boomers see our Preventative Health Fact Sheets and articles on the Health page – just click the link below
Disclaimer: The information contained in this section should not be used for individual medical advice. Please see your doctor if you have concerns or specific questions relating to your health.
Baby Boomer Info byte: You would need to add the entire population of Generation ‘X’ and ‘Y’ to match the number of Australian Baby Boomers. (Source: ABS Generation to Generation 2006 data report 2009 – 20700)
Babyboomers Pty Ltd
Babyboomers Pty Ltd operates the babyboomers.com.au website. The company was listed in 2000 and has been monitoring the needs of Baby Boomers and developing concepts and understanding around these needs since that time. David Stevens – Baby Boomer Social Researcher has a background in psychology and research. His body of work includes research into the future needs of the Baby Boomers for health and ageing, lifestyle communities, and prevention, over a 25-year period. This has included overseas study and commissioned research incorporating the population needs in the US, UK, and Asia.
P: 61 8 9225 7874