KUWAIT: The Dasman Diabetes Institute celebrated World Health Day yesterday, which focused on fighting the chronic disease of diabetes under the slogan ‘Fight Diabetes’. Dasman Diabetes Institute (DDI) decided to expand awareness activities by launching a mobile clinic in cooperation with Zain in the presence of the institute’s Director General Dr Qais Al-Duwairi, Chairman of Institute Regents Dr Hilal Al-Sayer, Director General of Kuwait Institute of Medical Specialties Dr Ibrahim Hadi and Zain Kuwait’s CEO Iman Al-Roudhan.
Duwairi said the goal behind the mobile clinic is to spread awareness in the society by providing health information and advice during preliminary tests. He said the latest statistics by the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) shows the escalating rates of diabetes incidents around the world in 2015, and it is expected to have one adult with diabetes out of every 10 persons in 2040.
Dr Duwairi said Kuwait’s statistics show the prevalence of Type 2 diabetes in the age group of 20 to 79 is around 20 percent, while Type 1 diabetes among children below 15 saw 37 cases out of 100,000, placing Kuwait third worldwide. He said the World Health Organization considers diabetes among the diseases that have reached critical levels in some developing nations, and described it as a national crisis with top priority that needs to be confronted.
He said the DDI prepared a plan to hold various activities on the occasion of World Health Day including the mobile clinic that will visit various public and private places. He added that this comes within the efforts to spread health awareness in the society, which is part of DDI’s mission to limit the effects of diabetes and its related complications in Kuwait. He said the plan calls for cooperation with Zain Telecommunications to spread health awareness among various groups in the society by using technological communications tools for messages with medical information.
Dr Duwairi said the institute is currently conducting advanced studies in cooperation with international bodies, and mentioned that more than 109 publications were published on diabetes and its complications.
Meanwhile, Dr Sayer said diabetes now represents a danger in Kuwait and GCC countries, adding that people in the region are not aware of the danger of the disease and its complications that are now contributing to a higher mortality rate. He said there are programs supported by the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Sciences that rely on educating school students to change their way of living and eating habits and be active, as this is highly important to keep their bodies healthy.
In its April 2016 report the World Health Organization (WHO) said that the number of people with diabetes has nearly quadrupled since 1980. Prevalence is increasing worldwide, particularly in low- and middle-income countries. The causes are complex, but the rise is due in part to increases in the number of people who are overweight, including an increase in obesity, and in a widespread lack of physical activity.
Diabetes of all types can lead to complications in many parts of the body and increase the risk of dying prematurely. In 2012 diabetes was the direct cause of 1.5 million deaths globally. A large proportion of diabetes and its complications can be prevented by a healthy diet, regular physical activity, maintaining a normal body weight and avoiding tobacco use. In April 2016, WHO published the Global report on diabetes, which calls for action to reduce exposure to the known risk factors for type 2 diabetes and to improve access to and quality of care for people with all forms of diabetes.
By Abdellatif Sharaa