Windhoek-Many people do not take precautionary measures against diabetes, despite the disease being one of the leading silent killers.
A wellness officer of the Namibia Health Plan (NHP) medical aid fund made this observation during a wellness day held at New Era Publication Corporation (NEPC) last week.
“We’ve see people with extremely high blood pressure and high glucose and they did not even know they had those problems,” said Ilana Greeff in an interview with this reporter on Friday.
NHP on Friday held a wellness day at NEPC head officer where employees were tested for glucose, blood pressure and cholesterol.
Greeff said the wellness day was to identify high-risk members of the medical aid fund for preventative care.
“When we have identified members who are high risk we motivate them to adhere to their medication, seek medical attention, adapt to a healthy lifestyle and refer them to a dietician,” Greeff said.
She added that these high-risk members undergo a six-month course for free where matters related to their health are addressed.
“We have seen a huge success with this programme because people really love the programme,” added Greeff.
Uncontrolled diabetes, cholesterol and high blood pressure can be fatal, noted Greeff.
“With uncontrolled diabetes the person can lose their legs, they are constantly thirsty and they may not know what the problem is,” added Greeff.
She said NHP focuses mainly on companies where employees are members of the fund. “In a year, we reach between 5 000 and 7 000 people with the wellness days,” said Greeff.
She added that in a year, NHP has three wellness days with the public where anyone can be screened for diabetes, high blood pressure and cholesterol.
Olivia Kangandjela, the chief human capital officer at NEPC, said wellness days at work can encourage employees to be more health conscious and achieve their wellness goals.
“The purpose of conducting a wellness day at work is to take care of our employees’ wellbeing and inspect the health of our workforce. This increases productivity, employee engagement and reduce absenteeism. Conducting wellness activities is important to us as an employer because a healthy workforce is a more productive workforce,” added Kangandjela.
That was the third time NEPC employees participated in the NHP wellness day.
Apart from the screening, the employees were also tested for blood type by the Namibia Blood Transfusion Services and they were treated to a 10-minute massage.