Number of diabetics in Qatar increasing

November 9, 2010

The number of people with diabetes in Qatar is steadily increasing as more than 2,600 patients have been seen by the diabetes educators at Hamad General Hospital in the first nine months of the year, a health official has warned.

“The number of people with diabetes in Qatar is increasing due to factors such as population growth, aging, sedentary lifestyles and the increasing prevalence of obesity brought about by lack of physical activity and poor dietary habits,” Somaya Al Haidose, Hamad Medical Corporation’s patient and family education unit director said.

The patients were counselled on diabetes, including signs of hypoglycemia and hyperglycemia and their management, diabetic ketoacidosis, chronic complications, how to manage diabetes during special situations such as fasting, Haj or travelling, achieving and maintaining one’s optimal body weight, good nutrition and physical exercise.

In comments ahead of the World Diabetes Day on November 14, Somaya said that more and more patients were having heart attacks, strokes and kidney disease because they were diagnosed with the underlying condition at a late stage, Qatari daily Gulf Times reported on Tuesday.

World Diabetes Day, the primary global awareness campaign for diabetes, is significant to the success of patient care initiatives because of its message about empowerment through education, she said.

The campaign aims to draw attention to the paramount issues facing the global diabetes community.

“For governments, the message of World Diabetes Day is a call to implement effective strategies and policies for the prevention and management of diabetes, in order to safeguard the health of their citizens with and at risk of diabetes. For healthcare professionals, it is a call to improve their knowledge so that evidence-based recommendations are put into practice,” Somaya said.

A reliable patient education component is important in any healthcare system and the role of trained educators in helping diabetics to better understand their condition, and facilitating a more accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment is highly significant, she said.

“When you add reliable patient education into the patient-provider relationship, it forms a bond of trust that enables patients to understand better and communicate more effectively about their condition and symptoms,” she said.

“We are encouraging people to think more about whether they are at high risk of diabetes today through awareness campaigns in communities and schools. We are increasing focus on tools that provide support for behavioural changes and improved quality of life as the core of better health outcomes,” she said.



About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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