According to the World Health Organisation, 63 per cent of deaths annually are due to noncontagious diseases resulting from lack of active lifestyle, bad diet, smoking, or alcohol. An estimated one in five people in the UAE — 19 per cent of the population — is estimated to have the diabetes. Predictions are being made that the Middle East is set for a massive 263 per cent increase in diabetes rates by 2030.
So many statistics. So many challenges to overcome and so many people with opinions on how to tackle diabetes in the region.
But what do those most at risk see as the key challenges affecting them in trying to live healthier and happier lives?
We decided to find out.
We spoke with 425 people (aged 11-80), in Dubai recently, many of whom are patients, and asked them about the aspects of health improvement that they found most difficult and what their solutions were.
Here’s what we learned:
“I don’t know enough about what is going on in my area to help me lead a healthier lifestyle”
“I need more more than leaflets and billboard campaigns”
“I know about the risks; my grandfather and my mother have diabetes. I need help in preventing it. I don’t know where to begin”
“I wish my doctor could support me more in changing bad habits”
“I need motivation and support from as many different people as possible involved in my healthcare”
“We would like to engage in more exercise and diet and nutrition activities as a family”
We discovered 5 key things from our community conversations in Dubai:
- Many people now understand that they need to change their lifestyles to live healthier and happier lives
- It needs to go beyond screening and medication for many, as more people than ever are ready to take the steps towards disease prevention
- Prevention needs to be more bespoke and personalised to the patient – prevention plans need to designed with them, not for them
- Those delivering health and wellness need to be better connected and work in collaboration to better support patients – too many organisations are working in separate silos
- And finally, creating opportunities for the whole family to exercise and eat healthy together is key to breaking the cycle
Visit us at Arab Health Zabeel Hall 1 stand Z1B30 to see how Elemental Software is facilitating lifestyle change for those most at risk and how we are bringing multiple stakeholders together to meet targets and strategies to reduce diabetes in the region. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org @Its_Elemental