Awareness Programmes in the Community to Tackle NCDs Problem
eaching out to families through awareness is a way forward to tackle non-communicable diseases (NCDs) for the National Wellness Centre.
The centre, located at the Ministry of Health and Medical Services building, hopes to promote health lifestyle to combat NCDs. NCD national advisor and Head of the National Wellness Centre, Dr Isimeli Tukana, is optimistic that the awareness programmes would promote positive behaviour change among families.
“Our plan is to do more outreaches in the communities and provide health screenings and raise awareness on NCD prevention. For a healthy Fiji, we need to have healthy families and parental role is important in terms of providing healthy choices to their family members,” he said.
“NCD is about lifestyle and lifestyle is about people. Family health is very important especially in nurturing healthy lifestyle for children, as there is a shift to processed food. We need to improve the lifestyle to add value to the medical intervention. I am happy to say that we now have a diabetic management guideline together with the cardiovascular and respiratory guidelines. “We have also started with the road campaign on nutrition and we are visiting the schools and raising awareness on healthy lifestyle,” Dr Tukana said.
The two main strategies identified to effectively tackle NCDs are the health sector intervention and awareness on the healthy lifestyles.
“The real prevalence of diabetes in Fiji was 16.5 per cent in 2002 and now its 15.6 per cent. The consequences of NCD are that it affects productivity level and incurs cost to the health sector and burdens the families. “We need the support of the Faith Based Organisations and community leaders to address this issue at community level,” Dr Tukana said. Source: Ministry of Health and Medical Services
Ministry of Health staff members from the central and eastern division with representatives of Fiji Diabetes during the NCD Awareness workshop held in Suva earlier this month.