In commemoration of the 2019 World Diabetes Day, the Lions Club International, District 404BI, decided to educate people from communities around Igosun, Alawada, Oje, Total Garden, Yemetu and environs and provide free sugar screening for them so that they would know their status and understand how to manage their health situation.
Around 150 were screened during the programme which held at the field behind the Yemetu police station and was a collaboration between the club and the Ministry of Health in Oyo state while many had a one on one chance to consult privately with Dr Akin Onasanya, the consultant from the College of Medicine, University College Hospital.
Speaking on the purpose of the project which is an annual contribution of the club, Lion Bukola Olufare JP, the chairperson of the Diabetes Awareness Programme stated that Lions Club International has taken it upon itself as an association to positively impact the lives of the populace most especially the under privileged.
“It is our responsibility as a humanitarian organisation to reduce diabetes in the society to the barest minimum if we cannot totally eradicate it. Government alone cannot handle the issue of health; this is why the Lions Club being an organization focused on showing kindness to others embarked on this project to save lives by filling the vacuum with its contributions.
“I believe our impact service organization is being felt across the world on health challenges,” he stated while appealing to the public to take their health as important and follow any advice given by medical personnel at the event.
The people were educated on the causes and management of diabetes by Dr. Onasanya, who spoke on the topic, the family and diabetes. He explained that diabetes can be hereditary and often, it is the reason many people go through amputation, adding that if not well managed, complications from diabetes can be deadlier than most diseases.
Dr Onasanya who described diabetes as a silent killer said it is not an issue anyone can trivialise as reports has proved that a life is lost to diabetes complications every five seconds. According to him, diabetes is on the rise in Nigeria and there’s a need for every individual to undergo screening at least once a year to determine their status and manage their condition because there is no cure for diabetes at present.
The medical expert stated that diabetes which kills more than HIV, malaria and tuberculosis combined together, is caused by a pile up of sugar in the blood due to lack of insulin or inadequate insulin to break up sugar into glucose, adding that when the pancreas doesn’t produce insulin in the required quantity, the risk of diabetes is high.
He explained further that diabetes destroy the organs in the body and rarely gives symptoms until it is at an advanced stage adding that it also goes together with other diseases like hypertension and obesity.
Dr Onasanya concluded that no food type can be said to cause diabetes if taken in moderation, adding that people’s inability to weigh what they consume is the reason doctors take them off some types of food to manage their condition.
Also speaking, the Region Chairperson of the club, Lion Oludare Isola, promised that they will ensure that there is a great improvement on the next edition of the event as it is the vision of the club to reduce the issue of diabetes to the barest minimum if not totally eradicate it.
He reiterated the importance of people getting screening in order to save lives while the representative of the District Governor, Lion Layi Fadairo stated that regular screening is the only way to maintain good health, adding that the club will continue to do more to sensitise the people.
In her vote of thanks, Mrs Temitayo Abioye from the Ministry of Health also reiterated government’s commitment to good health and encouraged the people to take issues that involve their health seriously.
The beneficiaries of the project expressed their joy that the programme was brought to their communities and promised to take to every advise given them to avoid being victims of diabetes.
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