Posted on November 10, 2014

In the lead-up to World Diabetes Day, six of Qatar’s largest public and private organisations have reaffirmed their continued commitment to Action on Diabetes – a unique partnership that has resulted in greater awareness, research, screening and education about Diabetes over the past three years. Sheikh Dr Mohamed bin Hamad Al Thani led dignitaries from the Supreme Council for Health, Hamad Medical Corporation, Qatar Diabetes Association – a member of Qatar Foundation, the Primary Health Care Corporation, Maersk Oil Qatar and Novo Nordisk in celebrating three years of success at a press conference held in Doha today.

“Diabetes is one of Qatar’s greatest health challenges but Action on Diabetes’ work since 2011 illustrates what can be achieved when we all work together for the good of everyone in Qatar. The Supreme Council of Health is proud to confirm our continued commitment as a strategic partner in helping Action on Diabetes encourage behaviour change in 2015 and beyond,” Sheikh Dr Mohamed bin Hamad Al Thani, Director of Public Health, Supreme Council of Health said. Over the past three years, Action on Diabetes has screened 22,000 people for the condition, with the help of partners; engaged with thousands of people through awareness campaigns and supported five courses to further educate doctors, nurses and diabetes educators about the latest techniques in treatment and support.

Herluf Nis Thomsen, Senior Project Manager at Action on Diabetes, said: “Without our strategic partners, Action on Diabetes would be much more limited, so I am delighted they have each reaffirmed their commitment so we can continue our work towards beating Diabetes and helping those with the condition better manage it. 2014 has been our most successful year to date, with 14,000 people tested for Diabetes, mostly through our workplace screening campaign, on top of a successful Ramadan campaign and our education and research work. We have our strategic partners to thank for such impressive progress. To mark World Diabetes Day, Action on Diabetes will host its fourth annual Diabetes Screening Awareness Village at Katara this Friday and Saturday. The Action on Diabetes Screening Bus will be staffed by professional diabetes educators and separate tents will educate visitors about the importance of a healthy diet and exercise.

How does it feel to fly with the best ?

Dr. Mohsin Mismar, Manager of the Adult Health Division at the Primary Health Care Corporation, said: “I am pleased to reaffirm our commitment to Action on Diabetes and we look forward to seeing hundreds of people visit this year’s Diabetes Village at Katara. Diabetes awareness has come a long way in Qatar over the past three years, and continuing our partnership was an easy decision for us. What an incredible achievement 2014 in particular has been. It was incredible to witness hundreds of people come through their workplace and getting tested for diabetes. Through this partnership, we wanted to reach as many people as possible with this awareness campaign, to educate a big tier of the community on the benefits of leading a healthy lifestyle and thus reducing the risk of diabetes. I’d like to thank Action on Diabetes for an extremely worthwhile campaign and we look forward to supporting their projects now and in the future.”

One of Action on Diabetes’ strategic partners, Maersk Oil Qatar, is this weekend jointly hosting the annual Maersk Oil Qatar and Qatar Petroleum (MOQP) Challenge at Fuwerit, where 30 corporate teams will compete. All funds from registration fees will once again go towards funding the Al Bawasil childrens’ camp for those with Diabetes. Commenting on this donation, Dr Abdulla Al-Hamaq, Executive Director of the Qatar Diabetes Association – Qatar Foundation, said: “Last year, Al Bawasil camp hosted 60 children from seven regions of the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) and the financial support from the MOQP Challenge helped make it a memorable experience for all of them. The camp’s mission is to create a safe and loving environment for children with diabetes, to teach them how to take charge of their condition and avoid its complications in order to reach their full potential. This is an example of what the Action on Diabetes partnership has achieved. We look forward to many more years working together. ”

Diabetes is estimated to affect 16.7% of Qataris (according to the 2012 Qatar STEPwise report). In addition, the International Diabetes Federation predicted that 25% of all Qataris will have Diabetes by 2030 if the diabetes challenge is not addressed and lifestyles not modified. Mr Ahmed Saeed Al-Al-Kuwari, Technical Liaison Manager, from Maersk Oil Qatar, said: “Maersk Oil Qatar is focused on supporting social investment programmes that make a meaningful difference to the lives of people living in Qatar. There is no better example of this than Action on Diabetes, which seeks to address one of Qatar’s greatest health challenges. Maersk Oil Qatar is proud to have helped initiate this important public-private partnership, and we are equally delighted to reaffirm our commitment for the future.”