Cyclists saving Govt 200m in health costs: report

Discussion in 'Australia and New Zealand' started by John Pitts, Jun 3, 2008.

  1. John Pitts

    John Pitts Guest

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2008/06/04/2264271.htm
    (ABC News)

    Cyclists saving Govt 200m in health costs: report

    A new report has found the Federal Government is saving more than
    $200 million a year in health costs through people riding bicycles.
    ...


    We all knew that anyway, but it's nice to see something official.

    The reader comments have little to do with the story: some troll has
    brought up the "bicycle registration" canard, and the usual bunfight is
    in progress.

    --
    John
    ....so I cheered up, and sure enough...
     
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  2. cfsmtb

    cfsmtb New Member

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    Additional info: ABC: Health benefits of cycling
    http://www.abc.net.au/rn/breakfast/stories/2008/2264337.htm
    When the Labor government came to power last November, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd promised to make the fight against obesity a national health priority. Current figures suggest that around three million Australians are obese, and more than 7 million Australians are overweight. Now a new report suggests that cycling could be part of the solution.


    CPF: Launch of Cycling: Getting Australia Moving
    http://www.cyclingpromotion.com.au/content/view/329/9/
    Cycling: Getting Australia Moving report and the presentation of the National Bicycling Achievement Awards is being held on Wednesday 4th June 2008, 11am to 1pm at Old Parliament House, Members Room, King George Terrace, Canberra

    Cycling: Getting Australia Moving Report, it's about 3.1M
    http://www.cyclingpromotion.com.au/images/stories/downloads/CPFHlthRpr08V3prf1.pdf
     
  3. ken

    ken Guest

    I'm afraid this is nonsense. I'm all in favour a promotion of cycling
    but I don't think that implausible arguments like this help.
     
  4. John Pitts

    John Pitts Guest

    On 2008-06-04, ken <[email protected]> wrote:
    > I'm afraid this is nonsense. I'm all in favour a promotion of cycling
    > but I don't think that implausible arguments like this help.


    Which arguments do you find implausible?

    --
    John
    Tragically I was an only twin. - Peter Cook
     
  5. TimC

    TimC Guest

    On 2008-06-03, John Pitts (aka Bruce)
    was almost, but not quite, entirely unlike tea:
    > http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2008/06/04/2264271.htm
    > (ABC News)
    >
    > Cyclists saving Govt 200m in health costs: report
    >
    > A new report has found the Federal Government is saving more than
    > $200 million a year in health costs through people riding bicycles.
    > ...
    >


    T-shirt design for the next CM anyone?

    Saving the world
    And $200 million

    Although Lindsay McDougal may cringe :)

    --
    TimC
    Error: Fuzzy Pointer Exception
     
  6. Tomasso

    Tomasso Guest

    "John Pitts" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]
    > On 2008-06-04, ken <[email protected]> wrote:
    >> I'm afraid this is nonsense. I'm all in favour a promotion of cycling
    >> but I don't think that implausible arguments like this help.

    >
    > Which arguments do you find implausible?


    Troll are implausible, and predictable.
     
  7. cfsmtb

    cfsmtb New Member

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    Trolls can also have tendencies to be shape-shifting, asexual polymorphs with deep-seated boundary issues. On the other hand, giant killer squid are far more predictable and entertaining.
     
  8. ken

    ken Guest

    If you read the report, which is here,
    http://www.cyclingpromotion.com.au/images/stories/downloads/CPFHlthRpr08V3prf1.pdf
    you will see that it is a piece of advocacy, not peer reviewed
    research. In other words, a lobbying document. That doesn't make it
    wrong but as with anything commissioned and written to argue a case,
    you need to look at it carefully.
    If it had been done by a company to sell its products (eg a
    pharmaceutical company) it would quite properly be laughed at and
    rejected out of hand.
    For the $200 million figure to be right, those currently cycling would
    need to be people who would otherwise do no regular exercise and who
    would be prone to one of the diseases attributable to lack of
    exercise. So it's a figure built on a set of fairly brave assumptions
    and guesses.
    I can believe that more exercise - such a cycling - might improve the
    health of some individuals if they don't get any other exercise. But
    to expand this to the community and then translate it into a health
    cost saving is drawing a long bow.
    Now, I am in favour of better facilities for cycling - it is a fairly
    important part of my life - but using "evidence" like this really
    doesn't help in the long run.
    Cycling deserves to be encouraged because it is, for many, enjoyable,
    healthy and inexpensive.
    And I am always uncomfortable when people feel they need to show a
    saving to the public purse to justify improvement of services. The
    government is there to provide us with the services that we want,
    dammit!
     
  9. BtC

    BtC Guest

    Cycling has not prevented me being hospitalised 4 times in the last 4 years.
    Dammit.

    Then of course you have add back the cost of those of us who get barrelled
    by cars or simply miscalculate and wind up in intensive care (if we get
    lucky).

    As a general statement it might be right, but I do not think that the
    savings are anywhere as great as suggested.

    As always, a sceptic.

    BtC
     
  10. terryc

    terryc Guest

    On Thu, 05 Jun 2008 18:54:34 -0700, ken wrote:


    > I can believe that more exercise - such a cycling - might improve the
    > health of some individuals if they don't get any other exercise. But
    > to expand this to the community and then translate it into a health
    > cost saving is drawing a long bow.


    Lol, it seems that christians are not the only mob into self-flagellation.
    I'll pass here too.

    1) Bicyclists are part of the community.

    2) Of all those people who commute by bicycle, how many do you think would
    actually walk to work instead? The turth is that the vast majority
    currentlly have no choice but to be cagers.

    3) Of all those people who go for dayrides or weekend tours, how many do
    you think would go for an equally long walk instead?

    Do you actually look at the community around you?

    4) Look at families/groups that go for a picnic. Some will tke bicycles
    along and go for a ride and this is in addition to any other activity,
    mostly sedentary, they might do. Very few will go for a long walk instead.
    Personally, I think this is where the vast majority of the figure comes
    from.

    It all adds up.

    5) We are ALL prone to disease. Once you've gained the ability to pass
    on your genetic seed, you are surplus to the human species and any time
    after puberty is just a bonus really. This concept that specific people
    are prone to a disease is just about total fantasy. (Statistical
    coincidence for most).


    > And I am always uncomfortable when people feel they need to show a
    > saving to the public purse to justify improvement of services. The
    > government is there to provide us with the services that we want, dammit!


    So I gather you are holding your breath.
    You need to listen to Jonathan Livingstone Budgerigar
     
  11. cfsmtb

    cfsmtb New Member

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    And how does the government know what the lumpenproletarian need, if the ramble don't start organising themselves and telling the pollies what they may what? If democracy functioned perfectly then maybe pundits, lobbyists, advocates and general shitstirrers would cease to exist. *Pause for thought*
     
  12. ken

    ken Guest

    On Jun 6, 12:45 pm, cfsmtb <[email protected]
    mx.forums.cyclingforums.com> wrote:
    > ken Wrote:
    >
    >
    >
    > > And I am always uncomfortable when people feel they need to show a
    > > saving to the public purse to justify improvement of services. The
    > > government is there to provide us with the services that we want,
    > > dammit!

    >
    > And how does the government know what the lumpenproletarian need, if
    > the ramble don't start organising themselves and telling the pollies
    > what they may what? If democracy functioned perfectly then maybe
    > pundits, lobbyists, advocates and general shitstirrers would cease to
    > exist. *Pause for thought*
    >
    > --
    > cfsmtb


    You misunderstand me. I was not objecting to advocacy for cycling
    facilities - just to fairly wobbly pseudo-scientific arguments that
    try to justify it on the grounds of cost saving.
    In the end, the best argument is that lots of (noisy) people want it.
     
  13. cfsmtb

    cfsmtb New Member

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    Ditto - isn't that the process we're actually partaking in?
     
  14. Fractal

    Fractal Guest

    There is a long line of argument that increasing cycling as everyday
    transport instead of driving or p/t use would increase the communities
    exercise level substantially. Active Transport and all that. Think healthy
    Dutch and Germans - tallest and thinnest people in the world, due mainly to
    extra cycling in those countries(no other credible explanation has been
    found). Build exercise into your daily routine. 10000 steps, etc etc. The
    BFA website has a resource page on health benefits
    http://www.bfa.asn.au/bfanew/resources/cycling_and_health.htm

    Probably started off with the book Cycling: Towards Health and Safety, put
    out by the British Medical Association in 1992(author Dr Mayer Hillman,
    famous UK bike advocate), in which much evidence was given of health
    benefits of cycling as transport. Numerous articles on the BMJ website can
    also be found - just do a search on cycling- and Australia brought out the
    report http://tinyurl.com/3k9add by (Dr) Harry Owens from Adelaide in
    the 90's on health aspects, the main statistical finding is increased life
    span amonst regular cyclists. Improved health and savings due to less
    medical care for heart and other sedentary type disease far outweigh any
    increased costs due to accidents. OK, regular walkers would probably show
    similar benefits but cycling is more efficient than walking so can do more
    trips than walking can, so is, as a community wide thing, worth encouraging
    on a mass scale for everyday transport. But, as ZB said, most cyclists do it
    because it's fun. Makes you feel better- improves your outlook- reduces
    depression- a whole set of other well worth it reasons for being a cyclist.
    Does raise the question though, is being a cyclist advocate good or bad for
    you? Health gains from cycling (assuming there is time for cycling after all
    the letter writing etc) are counteracted by the banging of head on brick
    walls. Someone should do a study.

    fb in sydknee
     
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