The chance of being hospitalised for chronic kidney disease (CKD) varies according to where people live, according to recent data from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW).
Hospitalisation or death caused by CKD was generally higher outside of major cities, but the disease was especially prevalent in remote areas.
The study also shows all people from remote and very remote areas were 2.2 times more likely to die from CKD than any person from a major city.
Residents from very remote areas were at least 4 times more likely to start some form of kidney replacement therapy – ranging from dialysis to kidney transplant.
The research shows that of all Australians, women living in remote areas have the highest risk of hospital admittance or death from CKD
AIHW spokesperson Lisa McGLynn said the overall picture of hospitalisations and death across Australia was complex but there were some broad patterns
"We found much higher rates in remote areas, particularly for women. This was likely due to the high population of aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in these areas," Ms McGlynn said.
"Chronic kidney disease is particularly common in Indigenous Australians. For example, in major cities dialysis hospitalisation rates for indigenous Australians were around 8 times those of other Australians, and this difference is significantly increased in remote and very remote areas."
In addition, women have much higher rates of hospitalisation or death than males in Australia.
In major cities and regional areas, there were 12-13 deaths per 100,000 men. This rate climbed to 19 deaths in remote and very remote areas.
For women, the rates climbed from about 10 per 100,000 in major cities to 29 deaths per 100,000 people in the more remote areas.
"The reasons for this are complex and likely due to several factors, including increased susceptibility to kidney damage and higher rates of diabetes and obesity," Ms McGlynn said.
The AIHW research also covered the likelihood of patients moving to a new area while receiving kidney replacement therapy.
Of patients who lived in very remote areas at the beginning of treatment, 57 per cent moved to less remote areas within their first year of treatment.
For the option of receiving private treatment for chronic diseases in Australia, consider private health cover. An Australian health insurance plan can help you receive the treatment you need in the area you need it.
Talk to the expert team at HICA today for a no-obligation health insurance comparison.