COVID-19 and chronic diseases

gnlm opinion

COVID-19 has been unforgiving for people living with non-communicable diseases, or NCDs, such as diabetes, cardiovascular-related illness, cancers, and mental health conditions, as well as other conditions such as high blood pressure and obesity.
This virus is potentially deadly, especially for the elderly and those with chronic diseases.
Those in particular danger are the elderly and others who have chronic diseases.
So, families need to take precautions for them and need to think about keeping elders somewhat isolated from public gatherings and to cooperate with the health authorities amidst the COVID-19 crisis.
Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) pose a major health challenge for Myanmar.
We have managed to reduce cases of communicable diseases by a certain extent, but non-communicable diseases are hindering Myanmar’s economic growth and plans for sustainable development.
The four major groups of NCDs — cardiovascular diseases, cancer, chronic respiratory diseases, and diabetes — account for over 80 per cent of all NCD-related deaths and share the same four major risk factors: tobacco use, alcohol abuse, unhealthy diet, and physical inactivity.
With enforcement of stricter stay-at-home measures in our country, especially in Yangon Region which is experiencing surge in positive cases, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic to limit transmission of the virus, new challenges for primary care practitioners who mange patients with chronic diseases emerged.
The COVID-19 pandemic has also brought ill consequences to the socio-economic development and our response to the pandemic is much related with the social protection and natural disaster management.
Hence, apart from the strategy to combat the pandemic, ways should be found to enforce the current response to COVID-19 to ensure that no one is left behind in receiving proper health care, amidst the ongoing pandemic.
The Covid-19 pandemic is like nothing we have seen in our lifetimes.
We must do everything possible to lessen its potential destructiveness. Part of that is also making sure we do not forget about the important care patients require to stay healthy and function.
If we can provide quality healthcare to all families and people in our nation, then we will not only prevent premature deaths, but empower our citizens to lead healthy lives.
Then, we can overcome the crisis together with a population and healthy workforce who can contribute in making our societies and economy strong again.

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