Sunday, July 3, 2022
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According to a National Broadcasting Corporation (NBC) news item of  22nd April, persons who have had COVID-19, can later become susceptible to chronic non-communicable diseases like hypertension and diabetes.

The item also stated that the Ministry of Health had noticed a trend where, “some people who previously tested positive for COVID-19 are having kidney issues”.

The item had Dr. Simone Keizer-Beache, Chief Medical Officer, stating  that, “We are noticing the increase in the numbers of persons who are presenting with decreased kidney function; and we are asking persons, especially persons who have had COVID, … that if you have had COVID even if you were asymptomatic, to seek care with your healthcare provider,” and (she) advised that, once recovered, such persons should conduct full medical checks to ensure that they are not affected by other medical issues after COVID-19.

She urged, “Come to a District Clinic, let nurse know ‘I had COVID, is it possible for me to have a little check-up: check my blood pressure, my kidney function, my blood sugar; because you’re seeing persons who had COVID without being known to them and they develop diabetes.”

The Chief Medical Officer was adamant that persons who fall within the stated bracket should become proactive where their health is concerned.  “We need to be very aggressive,” she explained, “St. Vincent went into this outbreak of COVID being one of the top countries in terms of non-communicable diseases – that is diabetes, hypertension.  We had very high rates of diabetes and hypertension and very high rates of people dying from diabetes and hypertension.” 

She was clear that if St. Vincent and the Grenadines was to be compared to the rest of the world, an increase in cases is being seen.

She reiterated that early detection was the only effective was to deal  with the issues but persons must submit themselves for screening.

 “We are urging persons to go seek healthcare early even if you’re not feeling unwell.  Go get your checkup.”

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