‘GPs should help combat diabetes’

Dr Azman opening the 1st Borneo Diabetes Conference in Miri.

MIRI: Doctors in private practice are urged to carry out free health screening regularly to detect cases of diabetes in their communities.

The number of diabetes cases is growing and the authorities need help from the private sector to deal with this serious health issue, said Health deputy director-general Datuk Dr Azman Abu Bakar at the 1st Borneo Diabetes Conference here.

Dr Azman said diabetes had become a major health problem nationwide.

“The government is very concerned that diabetes cases have risen from 11.5% of the total number of diseases in 2016 to 17.5% in 2017.

“This year we will surely see another hike in the number of diabetes cases.

“At least 3.5 million Malaysians aged 18 and above are suffering from diabetes and the figure is expected to rise next year.

“We in the government health sector are doing all we can to treat those with the disease and also to prevent new cases via awareness campaigns and early detection.

“However, the task is too big for the public health sector to handle alone.

“We need those in the private sector to help with early detection too, not just treatment.

“Miri for example has 50 general practitioners working in private clinics.

“They should help carry out free diabetes screening to detect cases early,” he said.

Dr Azman emphasised early detection could help prevent full-blown diabetes.

Education too can prevent diabetes by promoting behavioural and diet changes, he added.

The three-day conference was attended by doctors specialising in diabetes from Malaysia, Singapore, Hong Kong and Taiwan. The conference was organised by the Miri Hospital and Miri Diabetes Association.

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Metro , East Malaysia , diabetes


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