WHO South-East Asia Journal of Public Health
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PERSPECTIVE
Year : 2016  |  Volume : 5  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 44-47

An approach to diabetes prevention and management: The Bhutan experience


1 Health Care and Diagnostic Division, Department of Medical Services, Ministry of Health, Royal Government of Bhutan, Thimphu, Bhutan
2 Diabetes Prevention and Care Programme, Health Care and Diagnostic Division, Department of Medical Services, Ministry of Health, Royal Government of Bhutan, Thimphu, Bhutan
3 Gidakom Hospital, Thimphu, Bhutan
4 Ministry of Health, Royal Government of Bhutan, Thimphu, Bhutan
5 Planning and Policy Division, Ministry of Health, Royal Government of Bhutan, Thimphu, Bhutan

Correspondence Address:
Tandin Dorji
Health Care and Diagnostic Division, Department of Medical Services, Ministry of Health, Royal Government of Bhutan, Thimphu
Bhutan
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DOI: 10.4103/2224-3151.206552

PMID: 28604397

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Bhutan has been witnessing a trend of increasing diabetes in recent years. The increase is attributed to a rise in risk factors such as overweight, high blood pressure, unhealthy diet and sedentary lifestyle among the population. To address the rising burden, the health-services response has been to establish diabetes clinics in all hospitals and grade one basic health units. People visiting the health centres who have high risk factors and symptoms for diabetes are screened using the World Health Organization cut-off level for blood glucose. They are then classified into prediabetes and diabetes. Accordingly, diet, medicine and physical activity are recommended as per their body mass index. To improve prevention and control of noncommunicable diseases, which include diabetes, the country piloted the WHO Package of Essential Noncommunicable (PEN) disease interventions for primary health care in low-resource settings in 2009, to promote early screening, treatment and follow-up, and adopted it in 2013. The WHO PEN has now been successfully integrated into the primary health-care system nationwide. It is planned that diabetes clinics will be upgraded to NCD clinics.


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