Under the theme, ‘Diabetes: Nurses Make the Difference,’ Grand Bahama’s World Diabetic Committee (WDC) has established a month-long calendar of events to bring awareness to the disease that afflicts countless Bahamians and millions of others the world over.
As November is known as National Diabetes Month, the local committee began the month with the World Diabetes Month (WDM) official opening ceremony via a Zoom meeting on Tuesday, November 10.
Registered Nurse Nicole Bain, Grand Bahama World Diabetes Committee Chairman, welcomed all to the opening ceremony.
“As the number of people with diabetes continues to rise across the world, the world of nurses and other health professional support staff is becoming increasingly important in managing the impact of this condition. As nurses, we are the first and sometimes the only health professional that persons interact with, for the first initial assessment to treat the disease. Nurses play a key role in diagnosing diabetes earl, to ensure proper treatment. We also provide psychological support to people with diabetes and with their families.
“As health care providers, along with the government, we must therefore recognize the importance of investing in education and training. With the right expertise, nurses can make a difference for people affected with diabetes.
“On behalf of people living with diabetes and affected by diabetes, the International Diabetes Federation is requesting national governments to recognize and advance the role of nurses in diabetes care,” stated Bain.
Hospital Administrator, Grand Bahama Health Services (GBHS), Sharon Williams, officially declared WDM open, congratulating the local World Diabetes Committee for continued efforts to educate Grand Bahamians on the disease which is highly prevalent within the Commonwealth.
“I am honored and blessed to participate in this event today, mostly for the opportunity afforded by the Almighty God, to serve another day. Additionally, I am privileged to join another Grand Bahama World Diabetic Committee again for its prolific awareness campaign.
“Last year, we would have been challenged in our celebration by Hurricane Dorian, but again, we are in great traction on our charge again; a campaign for prevention of diabetes and most important, to support and care for our clients and families living with diabetes. Our nurses as the theme states, make the difference.
“A vital difference is supporting, follow-up, overall treatment and care and, in the case of Grand Bahama, I know that our community is privileged to be served by our esteemed cadre of nursing professionals,” Williams said.
She noted also, “that throughout this month and beyond, healthcare professionals will have the opportunity to celebrate with caregivers in the spreading of the message and managing and mitigating the escalating health threats posed by diabetes.”
“Let us especially mark November 14, World Diabetes Day, on our calendar as we not only recognize, but celebrate with prayers, promotion and indeed with deeds to champion our nurses; our patients and our families as we confront this critical local threat.
“Over the past month and well into the future, our energies have been so consumed with the effect of COVID-19 on our population. As we move forward, let us be mindful that the many souls who succumbed to COVID-19, had pre-existing conditions including diabetes which previously disposed of them, a fatal outcome. Let us commit ourselves more aggressively, to engage as Madam Chairperson (Nurse Nicole Bain) implored us.
“We, at the GBHS, along with the WDC pledge our continued support to this charge. With this commitment, today, on behalf of the Minister of Health Renward Wells and our Managing Director of the PHA, I declare this month of activities for diabetic awareness, officially open.
“I thank you all for your activities and your active participation in the wellness of our communities,” concluded Williams.