Health + Wellness

New Diabetes Taskforce Established To Tackle Problem

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The establishment of a new Diabetes Prevention and Care Taskforce is set to help Singaporeans live life free from diabetes, and to help those with the disease, control their condition to prevent deterioration.

The task force seeks to implement a multi-year action plan to fight diabetes; engage and mobilise the public and the healthcare family as well as monitor and evaluate outcomes from its efforts. Co-chaired by Health Minister Mr Gan Kim Yong and Acting Minister for Education (Schools) Mr Ng Chee Meng, the task force will also include government agencies, the private sector and patient advocacy and caregiver groups.

This is timely, as it comes on the back of a growing global problem of diabetes that was recently addressed by the World Health Organisation on World Health Day 2016, which seeks to raise more awareness about diabetes. Here in Singapore, the Ministry of Health (MOH) has revealed that in an approximate of 440,000 residents aged 18 years and above had diabetes in 2014. That same year, half of those who suffered from heart attacks had diabetes; two in three new kidney failure cases were due to diabetes; and two in five stroke cases had diabetes. MOH added that there are more than 1,500 amputations annually due to complications arising from diabetes – about four each day. And if this problem is not addressed with more urgency, the number of diabetics in Singapore could rise to 670,000 by 2030 and nearly 1 million by 2050, based on an estimate by the Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health.

Addressing The Problem On Five Fronts

The new Diabetes Prevention and Care Taskforce will be addressing the problem of diabetes on five fronts, and will be supported by three work groups: Healthy Living and Early Detection, Disease Management and Public Education and Stakeholder Engagement.

  1. Prevent – Healthy living to avert or delay the onset and progression of diabetes.
  2. Screen – Early screening and intervention for individuals at risk or those who are unaware they have diabetes.
  3. Control – Better disease management to prevent or delay complications, and ensure a good quality of life at all life stages.
  4. Understand – Public education to raise awareness on the prevention and care for diabetes, and motivate individual behaviour changes.
  5. Do your part – Stakeholder engagement to galvanise a whole-of-nation effort to make supporting changes to the environment, while caring for Singaporeans with diabetes.

 

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