Diabetes: A ‘ticking time bomb’ for Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia has an 18.5 percent prevalence rate in the adult population, which ranks the country among the top 10 in the world with the highest prevalence of diabetes. (SPA)
Updated 13 November 2018
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Diabetes: A ‘ticking time bomb’ for Saudi Arabia

  • “Only 24 percent of respondents fully agreed that their current lifestyle is healthy and only 7 percent agreed that their current diet is healthy,” explained the survey

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia is sitting on a diabetes time bomb. The number of cases has exceeded 3.8 million and a huge majority of sufferers have no knowledge about the illness and its association with cardiovascular diseases. Type 2 diabetes is at an all-time high in the Kingdom, affecting the quality of life, including productivity.
A survey conducted by the Saudi Scientific Diabetes Society (SSDS) said that “more than 52 percent of patients with type 2 diabetes die of cardiovascular causes.”
The Kingdom has an 18.5 percent prevalence rate in the adult population, which ranks the country among the top 10 in the world with the highest prevalence of diabetes,” said the survey.
Speaking during the presentation of the survey, Dr. Saud Al-Sifri, vice president of the SSDS, said: “Type 2 diabetes is a serious epidemic, not just in Saudi Arabia but around the world … despite numerous efforts, awareness levels remain low around the knowledge gaps within type 2 diabetes management and cardiovascular disease risk implications ... Patients with type 2 diabetes are at an increased risk of developing heart disease.”
He advised patients to go for “regular checkups and have open conversations with their doctors. Given the importance and relationship between CVD and diabetes, there are new classes for type 2 diabetes treatment that have shown significant improvement in cardiovascular outcome trials,” said Al-Sifri, urging all stakeholders to address the issue Kingdom-wide.
The survey, which was carried out by the SSDS in collaboration with Ipsos, a global market research and consulting firm, said that “52 percent of the patients perceive obesity to be more serious than type 2 diabetes, confirming that increasing public awareness about a specific disease alters their perception.” In fact, 45 percent of respondents did not discuss cardiovascular disease’s association with physicians, it added.
“Only 24 percent of respondents fully agreed that their current lifestyle is healthy and only 7 percent agreed that their current diet is healthy,” explained the survey.


Saudi defense partnerships signed at Paris Air Show

Updated 20 June 2019
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Saudi defense partnerships signed at Paris Air Show

PARIS: Saudi defense chiefs signed a number of strategic partnerships with major global companies while taking part in the prestigious Paris Air Show.
The pavilion of the Saudi Arabian Military Industries (SAMI) company received a succession of key aerospace-industry figures during the Kingdom’s first exhibition appearance at the world’s largest aviation event.
High-profile visitors welcomed by SAMI chief executive offer, Andreas Schwer, included chairman of the SAMI board of directors, Ahmad Al-Khatib, deputy chairman of the SAMI board of directors and chairman of the board of directors of the Local Content and Government Procurement Commission, Dr. Ghassan Al-Shibl, and president of the General Authority for Civil Aviation, Abdulhadi bin Ahmed Al-Mansouri.
The pavilion also received a senior delegation from the Saudi Presidency of State Security, along with the director general of Saudi Arabian Airlines, Saleh bin Nasser Al-Jasser.
During the second day of the air show, which runs until June 23 at Le Bourget airport in Paris, SAMI officials took part in meetings and signed strategic partnerships with global businesses involved in the four areas of the company’s work, namely air and ground systems, weapons, missiles and defense electronics.
At a signing ceremony in the SAMI pavilion, company chiefs also put pen to paper on a joint project agreement with US aerospace and defense company L3 Technologies for cooperation in the field of electro-optical and infra-red technology and special task systems inside Saudi Arabia. In February, the two sides signed a memorandum of understanding establishing the joint project.