Medical doctors have identified hypertension, overweight and diabetics at an alarming rate along the coast towns in the Western Region.
Of the 21,035 people screened in 14 fishing communities in the region, 4,544 people representing 21.6 per cent were hypertensive while 4,502 others representing 21.4 per cent overweight.
A total of 3,071 others representing 14.6 per cent were diagnosed of diabetics. Additional 2, 987 residents representing 14.2 per cent were also obese.
The cases were recorded in Takoradi, Sekondi, Kwesimintsim, Abura, Agona Nkwanta, Aiyinase, Esiama, Half Assini, Tikobo No. 1, Tikobo No. 2, Sowodadzem, Beyin, Jaway Wharf and Elubo.
The figures, according to the doctors, is not only disturbing but also in sharp contrast to the widely held perception that people in rural areas in Ghana live a healthy lifestyle.
These revelations came to light when the Philipa Baafi Foundation took her How Well Are You campaign to the communities to check the health status of residents and educate them on the need to live a healthy lifestyle.
It was the first time the Foundation by the gospel musician cum occupational therapist, Philipa Baafi took her campaign to the region after Greater Accra.
The Ghana National Petroleum Commission (GNPC) Foundation and the Ministry of Health are supporting the campaign.
Three people from Abura, Aiyinase and Sowodadzem whose conditions were critical were rushed to the various health centers where they were admitted for monitoring.
Dr. John Gyenfi of Kremlin Medical and Surgical Centre at Kojokrom in Sekondi advised the fisher folks to embark on regular check-ups to avoid sudden illnesses.
“Health is wealth so it is always good to pass by and have a check-up. You don’t know what hiding inside your body and what will kill you”, Dr. Gyamfi advised.
The General Manager of the GNPC Foundation, Dr. Kwame Baah-Nuakoh, said the ‘How Well Are You’ campaign is in line with the GNPC’s social responsibility to ensure that inhabitants in their operational areas are healthy.
He said the GNPC would collaborate with the Philipa Baafi Foundation annually to bring health delivery to the doorsteps of the people within their operational areas, “in addition to the scholarships that are given to students.
“The scholarships are given to students in the areas of study such as science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics”, Dr. Baah-Nuako explained.
The Chief Executive Officer of the Philipa Baafi Foundation, Kwame Karikari, said the Foundation is poised to take health delivery to the doorsteps of every Ghanaian but noted it cannot do without the support from both the government and corporate bodies.
There were musical performance and motivations from the highlife musician, Lucky Mensah and Philipa Baafi herself.