In March 2016, Myanmar elected its first civilian head of state in more than 50 years. The country begins this new era burdened by a number of challenges: among them, an under-resourced health care system
Diabetes is one of the main health problems in Myanmar, according to the Myanmar Diabetes Association. A national survey supported by the WDF found a diabetes prevalence of 10.5% among Myanmar adults (the global diabetes prevalence is 8.8%, according to the International Diabetes Federation).
Changing lifestyles and limited knowledge of prevention are fuelling the epidemic. Yet despite increasing government recognition of non-communicable diseases and willingness to address them, knowledge among health authorities and providers about NCD prevention and management is limited. This is the result of a lack of training and outdated teaching curricula.
Funds raised by the WDF in 2016 will be used to establish one to two hypertension and diabetes clinics in Yangon, the former capital of the south Asian country.
Although Yangon is relatively undeveloped compared to other major cities in the region, Yangon is now the most vibrant city in Myanmar. About 5 million of Myanmar’s 55 million residents live in the Yangon region.
WDF support will include:
The services will be functional primo 2018. They will be anchored within Myanmar’s existing public healthcare system, in hopes that over time, this critical pilot will be able to pave the way for a more comprehensive diabetes foot care programme in the country.