February 20, 2024

Cayman Islands Minister’s remarks- World Diabetes Day 2018

From Cayman Islands Ministry of Health

Minister for Health, Environment, Culture and Housing

Hon. Dwayne Seymour, JP, MLA

Message for World Diabetes Day 2018

14 November 2018


“The Family and Diabetes” is this year’s theme for World Diabetes Day which the global community, including the Cayman Islands, will observe on Wednesday, 14 November. The theme will carry over into 2019 for continued and focused attention on the impact that diabetes has on the family; to promote the role of the family in management, care and prevention and education of diabetes; and to support the network of those who are affected.

It is estimated that over 425 million people worldwide currently live with diabetes; whereas 1 in 2 people who currently live with the condition are undiagnosed.  In the Cayman Islands we too share the burden of this disease with approximately 6.69 % of the population having been diagnosed.  As such, it is impossible to overstate the importance of regular health checks to be in the know for an early diagnosis. Reducing your family’s risk starts at home by adopting a healthy lifestyle, eating healthy meals and exercising together. This is especially true for Type 2 Diabetes, which is largely preventable.

This year’s focus further calls to mind last year’s theme which highlighted the severe threat that gestational diabetes poses to the health of mothers and children. For this reason it is never too early when planning and growing your family, to embrace a healthy lifestyle.

As part of pro-active efforts to raise awareness across the community of the risks surrounding diabetes, the Health Services Authority will mark World Diabetes Day by offering various screenings relevant to diabetes. From 8.30 a.m.-2.00 p.m. on 14 November, glaucoma screenings, blood sugar checks and cholesterol checks will be available in the Cayman Islands Hospital Atrium. Also, information on diabetes and nutrition, as well as a range of exciting giveaways will be available. If you have doubts, or any cause for concern, regarding your status I urge you to take advantage of this opportunity.  All family units are encouraged to make this experience a family affair!

I applaud the continued efforts of the Public Health Department, the Cayman Islands Diabetes Association and the Lions Club of Tropical Gardens in keeping residents informed on the matter of diabetes and other lifestyle related diseases and their acts of selflessness through their ongoing community engagements. These efforts are a great example of their vested interest in the work that they do.

As Minister for Health I urge you to make time now to increase your knowledge of this disease, how it can impact your life and that of your family, and how it can be prevented. Detecting diabetes early is the key to helping to prevent or delay life-threatening complications, with family support.


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