Alarming! One-sixth of Ghanaians have diabetes

One-sixth of Ghanaians are diabetic,  thus making the disease more alarming than the prevalence rate of HIV/ AIDS in the country. National President of Diabetes Association of Ghana, Mrs. Elizabeth Esi Dunyo, who revealed this, expressed worry that government was building stroke centres and hospitals instead of setting up a fund to increase sensitisation programmes on the disease. The World Health Organisation defines diabetes as a chronic disease, which occurs when the pancreas does not produce enough insulin, or when the body cannot effectively use the insulin it produces. This leads to an increased concentration of glucose in the blood. [caption id="attachment_43665" align="aligncenter" width="564"] Mrs Dunyo[/caption] “What is the use of building a stroke centre when you can prick the finger in a community to prevent diabetes? What is the use of building multinational and regional hospitals if you could just prick their fingers in their communities and contact their schools to educate them and prevent it,” Mrs Dunyo asked. Mrs Dunyo who is also the head of the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) in the West Africa sub region said though Ghana has since 2016 signed on to the IDF to intensify diabetes campaign, the health sector has focused primarily on malaria, cancer and HIV, which she said has low prevalence rate.Speaking at the launch of the Western Regional Senior High Schools diabetes screening project in Takoradi, she said knowing one’s status on time will help reduce the dangers associated with diabetes. Over 1,000 SHS students across the Sekondi/Takoradi metropolis were screened on the first day. She has meanwhile called on government to set its priorities right, stating “It looks like our priorities are not at the right place as a country… so we need to wake up as we are ready to partner the government”

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