Australia faces many of the same health concerns as what many other countries do, such as having to develop policies to deal with health threats such as obesity, aging population, and chronic conditions. However, there may be one that needs to be added to the list.
The Insect Threat
Most would think that it is the snakes or the spiders that one should be concerned about when it comes to visiting or living in Australia but research is showing something far different. A more major concern is the bites and stings from bees and insects. This information has been brought forth from a study of a collection of data that spans thirteen years.
This study showed that over the course of the thirteen years the bites and stings from some of the bees and insects led to 42,000 people being hospitalized. Hospital admissions for bee and wasp stings came in at 33% ,while spider bites were at 30%. Contrary to the belief that snake bites would head the list those that were hospitalized for this was only 15%
While this is current news as a result of the data study, warnings about the potential danger of bee stings were being hailed back in 2009. The warning revolved around the potentially dangerous sting from the European honey bee. It was brought to Australia as far back as 1822 and has been accredited with the deaths of at least one or two Australians a year. This supersedes the stats for the deaths caused by spiders, snakes or sharks.
These occurrences of bee stings are not just taking place in the outskirts but are frequently experienced in the towns and cities. What some researchers believe is that people who receive a bee sting or insect bit are not as apt to seek out medical attention. As a result, many that are naturally allergic to the bee sting end up suffering from the anaphylactic shock which can lead to death.
The policy makers of Australia will have to pay close attention to the findings of the thirteen- year- old data and account for this when developing their policies. They will need to look at the cost based factors of what raises the costs for the hospitals both for the admission of individuals suffering from bee and insect bites, as well as for out-patient treatments. At least with the problem being recognized as being severe, it allows for proper planning.