Basseterre, St. Kitts, November 12, 2015 (SKNIS): The Ministry of Health in St. Kitts and Nevis is currently observing a week of activities in observance of Diabetes Awareness Week under the theme “Diabetes and Living Healthy.”
During a national broadcast on Monday 09 November, 2015, Minister of State in the Ministry of Health, the Honourable Wendy Phipps, explained that “the period November 8-15, 2015 has been designated by the Diabetes Association of St. Kitts & Nevis as Diabetes Awareness Week, in an effort to educate the public on diabetes as a chronic disease, and to emphasize the need for every citizen and resident of this Federation to practice a healthy diet and lifestyle.”
Minister of State, Honourable Senator Phipps, expressed gratitude to the Diabetes Association partnering with the health promotion unit in efforts to raise the awareness of the public in regard to this chronic disease. She noted that this partnership thus far, has been critical in the advocacy of healthy life practices.
Further explaining the importance of such advocacy, the Minister of State revealed that “the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) has assessed that in the year 2014 almost 400 million adults were living with diabetes. The IDF also estimates that in 2014 there was a total of almost 5 million deaths worldwide due to diabetes. Moreover, it has been confirmed that diabetes accounted for well over US$600 billion in healthcare costs during 2014,”
The minister of state indicated that “these statistics are staggering and glaring, and constitute resounding proof that diabetes has now become a major epidemic that must be addressed by all.”
Emphasizing that “diabetes is a life-altering disease that should not be taken lightly,” the senator explained that “a proper regimen of a healthy diet, exercise, medication, a positive outlook, and particular attention to matters such as foot care, diabetes can be well-managed and the quality and duration of life can be maximized for the persons living with the disease.”