The University of Ghana Medical Center (UGMC) has organized a free diabetes screening in commemoration of World Diabetes Day,
The event, which was held on Monday, November 14, 2022, took place in front of the Valco Trust Hostel on the University of Ghana, Legon campus.
The exercise themed ‘Education to Protect Tomorrow’ aimed to educate members of the university community about the symptoms, causes, risk factors, management, and treatment of diabetes, with emphasis on nutrition and lifestyle changes.
Beneficiaries of the exercise were screened for blood pressure, body mass index (BMI), body fat, and cholesterol levels, among other things, with a focus on blood sugar tests and diabetes risk assessment.
Following the compilation of the various tests, participants were given medical advice on their results. Referrals were given to individuals whose test results were found to be unusually high for a thorough evaluation.
Speaking to the media, Dietician with UGMC, Mr. Julius Agbagba, disclosed that the prevalence of diabetes in sub-Saharan Africa and particularly Ghana is very high. This, he said, is a major public health concern.
He added that the most concerning aspect of the situation is that most people with diabetes are unaware of it. Thus, World Diabetes Day provides an opportunity to raise diabetes awareness, a disease that threatens the lives of many people.
Further speaking, Mr. Agbagba highlighted that diabetes is a chronic metabolic condition commonly characterized by elevated blood sugar levels. He advised people to constantly check their blood sugar levels in order to know their diabetes status, as early detection was key to the prevention and treatment of diabetes.
He continued by saying that those who had unhealthy lives, were physically inactive, or had parents or siblings who had the condition were susceptible to the disease.
Family physician Dr. Miriam Opoku Agyakoa, who is also the head of the organizing committee, thanked the program’s sponsors for their support in making it a success. She continued by urging Ghanaians to change their mentality and routinely present themselves for checks in order to ensure that they are living a healthy life rather than waiting until they are ill and enduring disease-related issues.
Over 200 people participated in the medical outreach. The exercise was coordinated by the Department of Dietetics, Nutrition, and Food Therapeutics, along with the Department of Family Medicine and the Department of Public Health.
Participants thanked the University of Ghana Medical Centre for the diabetes awareness campaign and the screening exercise.
Story by: Isaac Agyei Asante