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ATF News & media

Welcome to the ATF News and Media

Here you will find the latest up to date news on Thyroid Health and Treatments

For All Media Opportunities please contact ATF CEO – Beverley Garside OAM –

Our news page is open to both members and non-members and provide information on managing your thyroid health as well as the latest events and medical updates locally and internationally.

We also encourage you to follow us on our social media, as we often upload information there first.


Our news pages are put together by our wonderful team of volunteers.  As with every registered charitable organisation we are enormously thankful for the work of our volunteers, many of them with their own personal thyroid story. To assist us in keeping you up to date and to provide educational and support services on managing your thyroid health, we ask you to consider joining or making a donation. Your help really does make a difference as we operate entirely without any grants or government assistance.

Thank you for your support and we hope you enjoy or news and social media pages.

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  • 1 May 2023 10:09 PM | Michelle Feraren (Administrator)

    Media Release

    Avoid Iodine Deficiency with Healthy Food Choices

    The Thyroid Gland is the powerhouse which gives the body and mind energy to perform!  

    From conception to death, without a health thyroid function, our wellbeing and general health can be affected by a sluggish thyroid function.

    Our Thyroid Gland needs an adequate amount of daily iodine enriched foods to produce enough hormones for its function.  Without it, our thinking, our energy and our general health can be greatly affected.

    To protect your family from iodine deficiency and the consequences of a sluggish thyroid function, ensure you include iodine enriched foods on your shopping list.  Foods which are enriched with iodine; dairy milk and dairy products – something milk substitutes don’t include, seafood, iodised salt for cooking and for the table – other salts such as Himalayan don’t include iodine and commercially made breads which are made using iodised salt, says Beverley Garside, ATF Chief Executive Officer.

    Australian Government Departments of Health, strongly recommend women of childbearing years ensure they include a daily pregnancy supplement including at least 150mcgs of iodine, to protect the pregnancy and the development of the foetus.  A daily supplement including iodine, together with an iodine enriched diet, is recommended for women contemplating pregnancy, during pregnancy and breastfeeding.  Thyroid function testing before, during and after pregnancy are also essential to ensure your thyroid hormone levels are adequate during this time, says Professor Creswell Eastman, ATF Principal Medical Advisor.

    Tobacco smoking, too much alcohol and other substances can all have an affect on a supposedly healthy person’s thyroid gland health.  Especially if they have a family history of thyroid disorders and it is possible they could develop a thyroid autoimmune disease.   

    As we age, our body and mind can slow, without knowing why! Don’t ignore the importance of a balanced diet which includes iodine enriched foods and use iodised salt for cooking and the table. A low daily iodine intake could affect your thyroid gland production!  To ensure you have enough energy and you feel the best you can, make sure your diet includes iodine enriched foods.   

    Statistics show over 1 million Australians are living with an undiagnosed thyroid disorder, which an iodine enriched diet could help to prevent! Don’t become part of the statistics and ensure you include iodine enriched foods in your household’s daily diet! 

    Click here for more information.

  • 16 Dec 2022 10:45 PM | Michelle Feraren (Administrator)

    Patient's Medication Choice of Brand

    Pharmacist regulations changed this year.  Pharmacists are now permitted to dispense bio-equivalent formulas of medications to patients on a generic basis when the 'Brand Substitution Box" has not been ticked on a prescription.  The ATF continue to receive complaints from patients who have been given a different brand that what they usually take and have been prescribed.

    It is now becoming a serious problem, as pharmacists quite often:

    • Change brands/formulas, without consulting first with patients
    • Patients can be told their original brand has been discontinued
    • Patients can be told their thyroid medication no longer needs refrigeration when given a different brand/formula to the one they usually take
    • Patients are not told that while certain brands/formulas are listed as being biologically equivalent that does not mean they are interchangeable in any given patient.

    Patients are often confronted and in some cases bullied into taking a brand the pharmacist has chosen to stock, instead of the patient's original brand and the one that works for them.

    They are not all the same, even though they may be listed on the Pharmaceutical Benefits List as being biologically equivalent!

    The active ingredient of brands/formulas can vary from one brand to another, as can the excipients and therefore they are not all the same, which pharmacists should know.

    Patients have a choice of brand, which their treating doctor has prescribed based on their medical history, diagnosis and performance of a particular brand/formula. This must continue to be respected by pharmacists to ensure patients continue to benefit, feel well and their thyroid health is not compromised. Thyroid conditions vary from thyroid cancer, to thyroidautoimmune disease, pregnancy and thyroid and more. Doctors base their prescribed brand/formula on a patient's diagnosed condition, blood results and the best brand/formula they believe will benefit the patient and carefully adjust the dosage of that particular brand of Levothyroxine until they achieve an optimal result with an individual patient.

    The ATF recommends patients should continue on their original brand. A brand/formula should only be changed after a patient has consulted their treating doctor and if the doctor believes it is necessary, not changed on a pharmacist discretion.  New brand/formulas should only be dispensed to patients who are newly diagnosed or when the treating doctor believes there is a medical reason to change to another brand of medication.

    Pharmacists are not thyroid specialists, do not know the patient's medical history or diagnosed thyroid disorder and therefore should do what they are there for, to dispense a prescribed medication.

  • 1 May 2022 9:00 AM | Michelle Feraren (Administrator)


    May 2022


    May is the time of the year for the Australian Thyroid Foundation’s (ATF) Thyroid Awareness Month

    Recent research from The Lancet – March 2022 emphasises the consequences and risks of an inadequate amount of thyroid hormone at conception, during pregnancy and whilst breastfeeding. 

    ‘Without an adequate amount of thyroid hormone mothers can be exposed to hypertensive disorders of pregnancy, including gestational hypertension and preeclampsia or eclampsia, which affect around 10% of pregnant women and are the leading causes of maternal and neonatal mortality worldwide.  Mothers who suffer from hypertensive disorders during pregnancy are at increased risk of long-term cardiovascular consequences and hypertensive disorders in subsequent pregnancies.  Evidence also indicates a risk of reduced cognitive ability to their offspring.

    Knowing if you are genetically predisposed to Hashimoto’s or Graves’ Diseases, which are both thyroid autoimmune disorders is important to be aware of, to ensure all appropriate tests are ordered.  Autoimmune disorders may predispose mothers to a thyroid problem during pregnancy, says Professor Creswell Eastman, ATF Principal Medical Advisor.’

    ‘Unnecessary risks to a pregnancy and the mother’s health during pregnancy and ongoing is something that can be avoided and prevented.   Raising awareness and ensuring thyroid tests are ordered by GP’s, when couples are planning a family and when the pregnancy is confirmed are both essential.

    As statistics show over 1 million Australians are living with an undiagnosed thyroid disorder, awareness and testing can prevent unwarranted outcomes for mothers and their babies, says ATF CEO Beverley Garside.’

    Pregnancy preparation and the mother’s health during pregnancy is something that is extremely important for all families. The ATF want to ensure the best outcomes for both mothers and babies are possible through awareness and education.

    For more information: May is Thyroid Awareness Month

  • 1 May 2021 7:00 AM | Michelle Feraren (Administrator)


    May 2021


    Statistics show that over 1 million Australians are living with an undiagnosed with some form of thyroid disorder,   Be Thyroid Aware and Test Your Thyroid!

    May is the time of the year when the Australian Thyroid Foundation’s (ATF) Thyroid Awareness Month, calls upon all Australians to be aware of their thyroid health.

    Thyroid Disorders affect all Australians of all age groups and demographics.  Awareness is the key to ensuring you do not overlook a thyroid disorder which could be affecting your health and wellbeing.

    • 1 in 10 Australians will be affected by some form of thyroid disorder
    • 7 of the 10 are women
    • Over 1 million Australians are undiagnosed
    • 60,000 Australians are diagnosed each year
    • Thyroid Cancer is increasing, affecting younger Australians
    • Iodine Deficiency & Thyroid Disorders affect pregnancy outcomes for women of childbearing years.

    “Thyroid testing is important for the diagnosis of a thyroid disorder. If you think symptoms you are experiencing may be due a thyroid disorder, please visit your doctor and ask for a Thyroid Function Pathology Test.  Further testing is available if your doctor deems necessary.  Testing will determine if your symptoms are thyroid related.  Diagnosis can improve your quality of life and wellbeing – says Beverley Garside – ATF CEO.”

    “Thyroid Disorders can affect patients of all ages and demographics in different ways, with women diagnosed more than men.  Women of childbearing years also need to ensure their thyroid health and function has been determined and treated if necessary.  Good Thyroid health during this life stage is essential for the development of the newborn – says Professor Creswell Eastman   - ATF Medical Advisor.”

    During May the ATF encourages all Australians to be aware of their thyroid health and visit their doctor to discuss symptoms, testing, family history of a thyroid disorders and to ensure your thyroid health is determined.

    As the Australian Education, Support, Advocacy and Awareness Organisation the ATF wants all Australians to be aware and not ignore any symptoms which may be related to thyroid disease. 

    “All Australians should be aware of their family history - if members of your family have been affected by some form of thyroid disorder, please ensure you do not overlook any symptoms.  Early detection is important, a simple blood test and if necessary a thyroid ultrasound examination if necessary will either determine or eliminate the possibility” states Professor Eastman – ATF Medical Advisor.   

    The ATF’s has been supporting and educating its members and the general public about the importance of Good Thyroid health for over 25 years!  The ATF is very proud to have reached this milestone and we look forward to continuing our work into the future and continuing to raise awareness” says Beverley Garside – ATF CEO”

    About the Thyroid

    The thyroid gland is located at the front of the neck, below the voice box.  The thyroid gland is a soft, small bow-shaped gland, below the voice box or larynx (Adam’s Apple) on either side of the trachea (windpipe).  Thyroid disease affects women more than men and is usually caused by an autoimmune disease.  Iodine deficiency is the most common worldwide cause of thyroid disorders.  Along with thyroid auto-immune disease, a low-iodine diet can cause hypothyroidism, an enlarged thyroid gland (goitre), infertility, pregnancy outcomes and foetal brain development. As part of the endocrine system, the thyroid plays a critical role in the healthy function of the body, influencing and regulating the activity of all cells and tissues.  A healthy thyroid gland uses ingested iodine from iodine enriched foods to produce thyroid hormones which regulate body and brain growth and development, body temperature, energy levels and metabolic functions.

    May is Thyroid Awareness Month in Australia, which incorporates World Thyroid Day (25 May) and International Thyroid Awareness Week (25-31 May)

    For Information, or to support the ATF, please visit

    ~ ENDS ~

    For all media enquiries, please contact:

    Beverley Garside

    Chief Executive Officer

    Australian Thyroid Foundation

    M: 0416 269 982   |   E:

    About the Australian Thyroid Foundation

    The Australian Thyroid Foundation Ltd (ATF) was founded in 1995 and is now the peak advocacy and support organisation for Australians living with a thyroid disorder.  The ATF is a national not-for-profit organisation with a focus on providing education and support to its members and promoting Good Thyroid Health messaging throughout the community.  The ATF is a member of Thyroid Federation International (TFI), a world-wide thyroid patient organisation dedicated to global action of thyroid related issues.

  • 31 Aug 2020 7:00 AM | Michelle Feraren (Administrator)


    Gold Bow Day – 1st September is the Australian Thyroid Foundation’s (ATF) Thyroid Cancer Awareness Day!

    The ATF is calling upon all Australians to be aware of any changes or symptoms related to thyroid cancer.

    Click below to read the Media Release

    Media Release

  • 22 Aug 2020 8:04 PM | Michelle Feraren (Administrator)

    House of Wellness - awareness article about the importance of good thyroid health and iodine deficiency with Prof Creswell Eastman – ATF Principal Medical Advisor and Beverley Garside – ATF CEO

    Read here

  • 6 Aug 2020 7:47 PM | Michelle Feraren (Administrator)

    Professor Creswell Eastman – ATF Principal Medical Advisor and Beverley Garside – ATF CEO speak to John Healy – Good Health on Great Lakes FM 101.5FM about the thyroid gland, iodine deficiency and pregnancy and much more!

    Listen Here

  • 22 Jul 2020 10:16 PM | Michelle Feraren (Administrator)

    On behalf of the ATF, Professor Creswell Eastman – ATF Principal Medical Advisor spoke to Josh Szeps on ABC Sydney Radio - Thursday 16th July about the importance of including Iodised Salt in the daily diet to maintain healthy thyroid function and production of thyroid hormones.

    Audio of Interview

  • 16 Jul 2020 10:39 PM | Michelle Feraren (Administrator)

    Associate Professor Rory Clifton-Bligh on behalf of the ATF, together with ATF CEO Beverley Garside spoke to Christine Layton – ABC Radio Perth about all aspects of thyroid disease with callers giving personal experiences. Very interesting segment.

  • 10 May 2020 9:03 PM | Michelle Feraren (Administrator)

    Professor Bruce Robinson ATF – Medical Advisor and Beverley Garside – ATF CEO spoke to Chris Smith about thyroid disease, Thyroid Awareness Month and much more.

    Listen Here

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PO Box 7161

Norwest NSW 2153



The mission of The Australian Thyroid Foundation Ltd (ATF) is to offer support, information and education to members and their families through the many services provided by The ATF and raise awareness about health consequences of iodine deficiency and the benefits of good thyroid health.

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