‘Eyes on Di­a­betes’ for World Di­a­betes Day

The Star (St. Lucia) - - LOCAL -

Di­a­betes is a world­wide pan­demic, which af­fects over six per­cent of the global pop­u­la­tion. The sit­u­a­tion in Saint Lu­cia is crit­i­cal as gov­ern­men­tal and non-gov­ern­men­tal agen­cies are busy try­ing to find strate­gies to cope with the dis­ease that ranks as the third lead­ing cause of death. More­over, it reaps se­vere fi­nan­cial and so­cial havoc on many fam­i­lies and the na­tion at large.

On Mon­day, Saint Lu­cia joined the rest of the world in the an­nual ob­ser­vance of World Di­a­betes Day (WDD). The Min­istry of Health and Well­ness, Saint Lu­cia Di­a­betes and Hyper­ten­sion As­so­ci­a­tion and the St. Lu­cia Blind Wel­fare As­so­ci­a­tion oc­cu­pied some sec­tions of the Sir Stanis­laus James Build­ing on the Wa­ter­front to of­fer free di­a­betes and hyper­ten­sion screen­ing ser­vices to the pub­lic. Nurse Claudius De­sir, a Pub­lic Health Nurs­ing Su­per­vi­sor was on hand to ex­plain what was hap­pen­ing.

“We are not di­ag­nos­ing any­body for hyper­ten­sion or di­a­betes,” De­sir said. “We are ac­tu­ally con­duct­ing screen­ings, and based on your re­sults we re­fer you ei­ther to your doc­tor or your lo­cal well­ness cen­ter. We also have the nu­tri­tion of­fi­cers do­ing nu­tri­tional coun­selling for per­sons we have found with high read­ings.”

There is a co-re­la­tion be­tween di­a­betes and eye health which is the rea­son this year’s theme is ‘Eyes on Di­a­betes’. Denise Godin, the Eye Health Of­fi­cer of the Saint Lu­cia Blind Wel­fare As­so­ci­a­tion says di­a­betic retinopa­thy is of great con­cern to the SLBWA.

Nurse Alma Dolor, Pub­lic Health Nurs­ing Su­per­vi­sor for Re­gion Seven says the SLBWA is mak­ing great strides with the use of elec­tronic ap­pli­ca­tions to as­sist in var­i­ous as­pects of vi­sion screen­ing.

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