Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Prevention better than cure when it comes to non-communicable diseases

Pay extra heed to the importance of health screening before it is too late, employers and employees were told by Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.

He said early health screening was necessary as it could save lives and ensure a longer quality of life while increasing productivity.

Early screening, he said, was vital in detecting the risks of non- communicable diseases (NCD) such as high blood pressure, diabetes, cancer and cardiovascular disease and would enable early prevention and treatment.

“Many Malaysians have yet to give due importance to health screening and assume they do not have the disease until it becomes chronic.

“At this stage, the effect and stress is not just on the worker and organisation but also on the family,” he said at the launch of the Social Security Organisation's (Socso) health screening programme here yesterday.

According to the Health Ministry's latest statistics, the number of Malaysians with diabetes last year stood at 2.6 million while 5.8 million had high blood pressure. Some 6.2 million had high cholesterol levels and 2.5 million people were obese, he said.

The health screening, which was announced under Budget 2013 and started last month, is provided free of charge to Socso's active contributors aged 40 and above.

Muhyiddin said the Government had allocated RM200mil to implement the programme which is expected to benefit 1.9 million workers.

He urged employers to remain committed and play an active role in supporting its workers, including encouraging them to undergo health screening, implementing programmes that encourage healthy living and providing recreational facilities.

“The health awareness promotion at the workplace will help increase productivity and enhance the organisation's performance in the long run,” said Muhyiddin, who commended Socso for taking a pro-active role in the prevention of diseases.

The free screening covers physical examinations, clinical tests, consultations and relevant advisory services.

Deputy Human Resources Minister Datuk Maznah Mazlan said 8,079 workers had undergone the health screening thus far, adding that 2,447 clinics have registered for the programme to date.


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