Pretoria: Gauteng Health MEC Hope Papo has urged drivers to know their health status before embarking on long journeys to be with their families or attend church services this upcoming weekend.
“In order to minimise road fatalities this Easter, I urge all drivers to go to any health facility and undergo an eye, diabetes and epilepsy tests as these conditions if not properly monitored can be contributory factors in road accidents,” said MEC Papo.
This week, Community Health Workers are spreading the message in areas where they work encouraging people to undergo medical check-ups in order to save lives on the roads.
In previous years, health workers took the campaign to taxi ranks and highways in order to bring the service closer to those who need it.
“Someone who has diabetes for an example needs to take their daily medication, have regular meals and intervals to rest and stretch. If one does not do this, they may suddenly feel dizzy and their vision blurred possible leading to them losing control of the car,” said the MEC.
The department also urges people to donate blood as it is mostly needed during this time. South African National Blood Service workers are out in places such as malls pleading for blood. Hospitals uses this blood for transfusion during surgeries and your donation can save a life.
“We also plead with those residents who will be travelling to malaria endemic areas such as Kruger National Park, Tanzania, Mozambique, Kenya and Somalia to take anti-malarial medication to protect themselves and those who will be in contact with them upon return,” said the MEC.
In 2013, the province had over 1 700 cases of Malaria and of those, 23 resulted in death. It was established that those who passed on, were people who did not take precautionary measures against the disease and presented late at health facilities.
The MEC also emphasised that all residents of the province should take charge of their own health, ultimately reducing their reliance on the health system for minor illnesses.
“More than 75% of patients who arrive at Gauteng hospitals suffer from illnesses that can be prevented through healthy lifestyles. Regular exercise, better eating habits, stress management and a drastic cut-down on smoking and drinking are some of the basic changes that will improve the health of the people,” he said.
SOURCE: SOUTH AFRICANOFFICIAL NEWS