Singapore

1 in 2 at risk of chronic diseases

Nearly half the people screened at a public health screening event last year were found to be at risk of developing chronic disease.

Speaking at this year's edition of the health screening programme yesterday, Minister of State for Health Lam Pin Min said 46 per cent of all screening participants last year were found to have abnormalities in at least one chronic disease indicator.

"This percentage is high. But screening is only the first step towards better control of your health," he said.

The annual health screening event, called the NUS Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine Public Health Service, is being organised this weekend, for the 11th time, by the National University of Singapore (NUS) medical students, at Clementi Avenue 3.


Minister of State for Health Lam Pin Min. ST FILE PHOTO 

It will continue today, starting at 10am, The Straits Times reported on its website.

The event is open to Singaporeans and Singapore permanent residents aged 40 and above.

This year, a new screening component for hearing has been introduced. Participants aged 60 years and above can receive preliminary tests on site.

If abnormalities are detected, the participant will be referred for further screening at the NUH Mobile Hearing Clinic Bus, which will be stationed at Clementi on two separate days later.

It has been reported that as of 2010, more than half of Singapore's adult population between 18 and 69 years old have high cholesterol, four in 10 are overweight or obese, a quarter have pre-diabetes or diabetes and about one in five has hypertension.

Left untreated, the associated complications may lead to disability, escalating healthcare costs and premature death.

These conditions are often linked to one's lifestyle.

A recent study found that lifestyle factors such as unhealthy eating, smoking, drinking too much alcohol and not exercising can shorten one's life by up to 12 years.

healthMINISTRY OF HEALTH (MOH)