One of the country's peak health bodies is calling on Australians to be tested for kidney disease.
According to Kidney Health Australia (KHA), 1.3 million people now live with undiagnosed kidney disease – placing them at up to 20 times greater risk of heart attack or stroke.
Research from the KHA indicates that more than 10,500 Australians currently receive dialysis, while another 1,100 are listed for transplantation.
National medical director Tim Matthew believes that testing for kidney disease should be as commonplace as checks for other lifestyle indicators such as cholesterol, high blood pressure and diabetes.
"Early diagnosis is essential to defuse the ticking kidney time-bomb," Dr Matthew said today (May 28).
"We are at a tipping point where the number of people with severe kidney disease will soon exceed available health resources."
Kidney Health Awareness Week runs from May 27 to June 2 and offers a range of activities across the country including free blood pressure tests.