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The MoPH organizes diabetes awareness-raising activities

Doha: World Diabetes Day 2021 under the theme Access to Diabetes Care will be observed by Qatar’s Ministry of Public Health (MoPH), Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC), Primary Health Care Corporation (PHCC), and Qatar Diabetes Association (QDA).

The International Diabetes Federation (IDF) and WHO established World Diabetes Day (WDD) in 1991 to call attention to the global epidemic of diabetes.

A host of activities aimed at raising awareness about diabetes will be held throughout November by Qatar’s Ministry of Public Health (MoPH), Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC), Primary Health Care Corporation (PHCC), Sidra Medicine and Qatar Diabetes Association (QDA).

Qatar (with a prevalence of 17%) recognized the need for a national diabetes strategy to oversee implementation, facilitate interactions and collaborations between governmental and non-governmental entities involved in diabetes, and improve access to diabetes care and prevention.

Under the Qatar National Diabetes Strategy, 2016-2022, the MoPH and its partners have made several significant achievements.

Qatar Metabolic Institute (QMI) Director Prof. Abdul Badi Abou Samra noted, “A significant example is the screening for diabetes in pregnancy program through which 89% of women are screened annually, within the first three months of their pregnancy, and provided access to diabetes care services at PHCC or HMC.

“This is significant, as women with gestational diabetes and their babies are at an increased risk of complications during pregnancy and delivery.

“Further, these women and possibly their children are also at increased risk of type 2 diabetes in the future.”

The Head of the Non-Communicable Diseases section at the Ministry of Public Health, Dr Kholoud Al Mutawa, said: “Until recently, Type 2 diabetes was primarily seen in adults, but it is now also occurring increasingly in children most likely because of childhood obesity

“MoPH and its partner organizations are currently working on a National Strategy & Action Plan for diabetes and obesity among children. The Action plan will focus on defined policies, strategies and interventions for addressing health promotion, disease prevention and improved access to the right care among this high priority population.”

The primary care sector plays an influential role in enhancing patient access by providing screening, extending diabetes services, and meeting evidence-based chronic and preventive care needs, according to PHCC doctor Samya Al Abdulla.

“Improving both care and access for the people living with diabetes in Qatar requires that primary care implements new models about where and when diabetic patients access primary care, who they see, and when to refer to secondary and tertiary care.”

Dr Mahmoud Ali Zirie, Senior Consultant, Head of Endocrinology and Director of the National Diabetes Centre at HMC explained that “the National Diabetes Centres at Hamad General Hospital (HGH), Al Wakra Hospital (AWH) and Women’s Wellness and Research Center (WWRC) offer specialised services using a multidisciplinary team of health professionals dedicated to the provision of clinical, nutritional and educational services for people with diabetes at a single location to enhance access to multidisciplinary care, in a single visit.

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