Lions Clubs, community service-oriented clubs in Ghana, subsidiary of the Association of Lions Clubs International, and the Churchill Foundation, have underscored the need for an extensive public awareness creation of diabetes in the fight against the disease.
According to Lions Clubs and Churchill Foundation, through the awareness, the public could be educated and sensitized on the existence and the effects of diabetes, and how it could be managed to prolong lives.
They made these remarks in an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA), on the sidelines of a free diabetes screening exercise for residents of Chorkor, as part of activities commemorating the Diabetes Awareness Month in November.
The exercise, which offered free testing and medication for first 30 days for those diagnosed, was organised by Lions Clubs in collaboration with Churchill Foundation and Mamprobi Polyclinic.
The participating Lions Clubs were; Accra Metro, Accra Diamond, Adenta Mountain View, Accra Spintex, Accra Ebony, and Accra Harmony Lions Clubs.
Mr David Pappoe, Marketing and Communication Chairperson, Accra Metro Lions Club, told GNA that diabetes was killing about five million people every year, and it was the eighth killer disease in the world.
He said the exercise aimed at creating more awareness for people to know their status, take medication for those diagnosed, exercise, and quit certain habits, to prolong their lives.
Mr Pappoe said the fact about diabetes was that “if you don’t get tested you wouldn’t know your status, so I will advise all Ghanaians to as much as possible get tested periodically”.
Madam Adeline Sadzi, Physician Assistant at Mamprobi Polyclinic, said she observed several people screened were living with high blood pressure, which they were not even aware of.
She reiterated the need for more public education; people should be educated to have control over their health “periodically, they should get tested to get rid of complications.
Dr Olakunle Churchill, Chief Executive Officer of Churchill Foundation, a subsidiary of Churchill Group, noted that the exercise was to help diabetics manage their conditions to avoid complications.
He noted that people who got screened were happy about their results, however, all beneficiaries of the exercise were sensitized on how to live good lifestyles, saying, creating more awareness was key to fighting diabetes.
Dr Churchill, who doubles as the Chief Executive Officer of Churchill Group and President of the Abuja Achievers Lions Club, Nigeria, told GNA that “wherever I see my Lion members, am always happy, and in any country I go to I embrace them and ensure we continue with our philanthropic work”.
Madam Phylis Vesta Boison, 2019 Miss Malaika Queen, championing charitable and humanitarian activities, also urged Ghanaians to cultivate the habit of regular medical check-ups to know their status.
She said regarding diabetes, there was a need for people to check their sugar level and blood pressure, occasionally, and this could go a long way in preventing them from getting one of their legs amputated.