May 26, 2023
BANGKOK – Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) has launched the “Diabetes-Free Thais” campaign to show city-dwellers how they can combat the debilitating disease.
Established in 2022 by the Diabetes Association of Thailand and Merck Thailand, the Diabetes-Free Thais campaign aims to raise public awareness of pre-diabetes conditions which, if detected and treated early, can slow down the development of diabetes.
BMA deputy governor Tavida Kamolvej said 73% of 7,500 people surveyed during last year’s campaign were found to be at high risk of developing diabetes.
The association therefore sought the BMA’s help in raising awareness of health risks from diabetes among target groups in the city, she said at Wednesday’s campaign launch.
“Public health statistics show that the majority of over 5 million diabetic patients reside in big cities like Bangkok,” she said. “The city lifestyle is one of the contributing factors to the development of diabetes, as people are busy and have less time to exercise and take care of their health.”
Seniors are at higher risk of developing diabetes and since they make up 28% of Bangkok’s population, the BMA will prioritise raising awareness in this group, she added.
Tavida said BMA’s Health Department will employ both proactive and passive measures to identify at-risk individuals in each community, reaching out to them with treatment and health advice.
Health practitioners and volunteers will also go door to door to raise public awareness of the importance of primary healthcare, which is crucial in detecting diseases at an early stage and helping to reduce treatment expenses in the long term.
“We hope cooperation under the campaign will improve the city’s standard of primary healthcare, and can be expanded into future projects by establishing hospitals and research institutes for diabetes treatment and prevention,” Tavida said.