May 10, 2013, 9:39 AM
We are told by health experst that many thousands of people are suffering from diabetes in the country.
In fact, we understand that in The Gambia, in 1995, a diabetes survey was done by the Medical Research Council which revealed, at the time, that 30,000 Gambians were suffering from the disease.
Today’s estimates revealed that, currently, there are over 150, 000 Gambians suffering from diabetes.
Going by the satistics, we believe urgent action is need to protect the health of our people by placing more importance on education for health, targeting people with diabetes and people at risk, in order to reduce the impact of diabetes in our society.
There is an absolute need to increase awareness on the effects of diabetes, and its complications among the general population.
Indeed, we are very much concerned about the country’s diabetes situation, which looks alarming.
According to officials, the country’s diabetes situation is on the increase and, therefore, a cause for concern.
This is a serious cause for public concern, and something has to be done about it.
The health experts have said that if diabetes is not adequately controlled, the patient has a significantly higher risk of developing complications, such as hypoglycemia, ketoacidosis, and nonketotic hypersosmolar coma.
They said it could also lead to longer term complications, including cardiovascular disease, retinal damage, chronic kidney failure, nerve damage, poor healing of wounds, gangrene on the feet which may lead to amputation, and erectile dysfunction.
Since this is the situation, it is imperative that people take more preventive means against it.
We challenge the health authorities to launch a national sensitisation campaign against diabetes in the country.
We also challenge the Gambia Diabetes Association to intensify their efforts in sensitising Gambians about diabetes.
Focus should not only be limited to diabetes patients, but should also aim at sensitising the whole society about the disease.