Wounds Australia is calling for Australia’s ‘hidden affliction’ of chronic wounds to be recognised as a serious health issue this Wound Awareness Week – with the number of sufferers set to soar as Australia’s population ages.

Few people are aware that chronic wounds are a serious health issue, impacting nearly half a million Australians a day and costing the health system $3 billion annually. The number of sufferers is expected to soar due to Australia’s ageing population, as people aged 65+ are most at risk.

Running from 16 to 20 October, Wound Awareness Week aims to draw much needed attention to the issue of chronic wounds, enlisting the help of Gold Logie winning TV personality Denise Drysdale.

While we often think of wounds as a cut or break in the skin, chronic wounds are those that take more than three months to heal or are reoccurring.

“Chronic wounds are a hidden affliction in Australia and must be recognised as a serious health issue to safeguard our ageing population,” said Ms Anne Buck, Wounds Australia CEO.

“The current lack of awareness means many people suffer in silence – they may not get the right treatment, or even realise that they need specialist care,” said Ms Buck.

Wound Awareness Week is asking Australians to ‘Be Wound Aware’ by learning and watching for the Warning Signs of Wounds: pain and heat, odour, excessive fluid and slow healing.

“It’s such a tragedy that people are suffering in silence from chronic wounds when they don’t have to,” said Ms Denise Drysdale, Wound Awareness Week Ambassador.

“If you or your parent has a wound that won’t go away, don’t ignore it and suffer in silence – get help! See a health professional, get treatment and you can get on with enjoying your life,” said Ms Drysdale.