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The wider benefits of SGLT2 inhibitors


This report published by The George Institute, The wider benefits of SGLT2 inhibitors, shows that making SGLT2 inhibitors widely available in Australia would save lives and reduce costs to society. 

1.7 million Australians have diabetes and around two-thirds also have cardiovascular disease, chronic kidney disease or both. Each year in Australia hospital admissions for cardiovascular disease and end-stage kidney disease cost over $6 billion.

SGLT2 inhibitors, a class of medication developed for the treatment of diabetes, have been shown to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and kidney failure.

The report found a $1 billion government investment over 10 years in SGLT2 inhibitor treatments would return almost $5 billion in benefits to society. In other words, every $1 invested returns almost $5 in benefits to society.

 A government investment of $1b in SGLT2 inhibitors treatment would prevent 4284 acute kidney injuries, 8744 end stage kidney disease patients, 4148 heart attacks and 7450 deaths over 10 years.  

This report provides the first estimate of the benefits this investment could deliver to Australian society.

“Our report provides important new data to complement current evidence, supporting prioritisation of investment in SGLT2 inhibitors in Australia, so they are accessible and benefit many more Australians,” Dr Clare Arnott, Senior Research Fellow at The George Institute and cardiologist at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital.  

Diabetes is the most common cause of chronic kidney disease and need for expensive dialysis treatment. People with diabetes and kidney disease are also at extremely high risk of kidney failure, heart attack, stroke and death.

In recent years, trailblazing research by The George Institute has shown that SGLT2 inhibitors not only reduce glucose levels in diabetes patients but also prevent cardiovascular events, such as heart failure, and slow kidney disease progression, reducing the need for dialysis.