It is not new to know that Malaysia has the highest rate of diabetes in Asia. According to the executive chairman of the National Diabetes Institute (NADI), Datuk Dr Mustaffa Embong revealed Malaysia is also one of the highest in world to suffer from diabetes.

The alarming rise of disease patients is the cause of many factors in our lives. “According to NADI records, statistic suggests that almost half of Malaysians do not know that they have diabetes”, he said.

Dr. Feisul Idzwan Mustapha, Consultant Public Health Physician and Deputy Director Non-Communicable Disease Section (NCD), Disease Control Division of Ministry of Health shared that in year 2015, 1 over 6 of the 6.1 million population for every Malaysian age 18 years old and above suffer from abnormal blood sugar levels.

But what does Malaysians really think about this non-communicable disease?

From left: Maximilian Lim, Managing Director of Ascensia Diabetes Care; Dr. Feisul Idzwan Mustapha, Consultant Pblic Health Physician and Deputy Director Non-Communicable Disease Section (NCD), Disease Control Division of Ministry of Health; YBHG Professor Dato’ Dr. Ikram Shah Ismail, President of Diabetes Malaysia and Chiu Kah Shin, Head of Asia Pacific Sub Region 1, Ascensia Diabetes Care Singapore at the MY Drive Against Diabetes 2019 Survey Results Unveiling Ceremony

Private organisation Ascensia Diabetes Care held “MY Drive Against Diabetes 2019”, a 6 months drive survey for Malaysians regarding diabetes and their health.

Check out the results below:

90% of them rated themselves for having good overall health

Standing at 47%, this large percentile of participants rated themselves for having “Good” health while 11% assessed for having “Excellent” overall health. Only 1% rated for “Poor” health.

Diabetes is caused by high sugar intake and family history

Majority (inlcuding diabetes patients and non-diabetes) believed that our local eating habit is the main factor for the disease, following closely with family health history for the hereditary illness.

Many non-diabetes Malaysians consider to have some knowledge on diabetes

The high rate of diabetes in the country resulted in fair knowledge of non-diabeticss’ public awareness and perception on the disease.Out of 7 being the highest, many consider to know at a rate of 4-5 for their understanding on diabetes.

Doctors are responsible and should be taking charge of the diabetes condition

More than half of diabetic patients believe that their doctors know the best (e.g. medication and follow ups) for patients to cope with their illness. 57% of diabetes patients find their doctors to be more responsible for mananging their diabetes than they are themselves.

From left: YBHG Professor Dato’ Dr. Ikram Shah Ismail, Maximilian Lim, Dr. Feisul Idzwan Mustapha and Chiu Kah Shin with the #DriveAgainstDiabetes Mobile Unit

All in all, Dr. Feisul Idzwan Mustaph commented that Ministry of Health is actively raising awareness and knowledge for the public but it will require behavioral change in Malaysians to prevent and manage the illness.

Lifestyle change and discipline are still the key for diabetic patients to observe their diagnosis and well-being rather be fully dependant on medical personnels to manage their health.

Ascensia Diabetes Care’s new CONTOURPLUS ONE smart meter enables diabetic patients to get accurate blood glucose readings and for the betterment of their health management.

The brand new meter can also connect to the mobile app for seamless operation. Discover more on the smart meter here.

Text by Jessy Wong

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