By Andrew Nsoseka
Biaka University Institute of Buea, BUIB, in collaboration with the World Diabetes Foundation, have developed a diabetes self-care guide for Cameroon, which is part of the objectives of its diabetes prevention and management project in some communities in the Southwest region of Cameroon.
The project, under the supervisory authority of the Southwest regional delegation for Public Health, has as main objective, the improvement of access to diabetes care in six selected rural communities in the Southwest region, within three years.
The production of the 35paged diabetes self-care guide is one of the core objectives of the project, with the two others being the training of 54 student nurses from Biaka University Institute Buea, alongside some 18 health centre nurses as diabetes care providers. The other part of the project is the establishment of functional diabetes prevention and control unit in each health centre of the selected rural communities within two years.
Selected communities to benefit from the diabetes prevention and management project in the Southwest region include CDC Mabeta Clinic, Government Integrated Health Centre Mabeta, CDC Dibuncha Clinic, Government Integrated Health Centre Idinau, CDC Idinau Clinic, and Government Integrated Health Centre Sanje.
Going by the project coordinators, after one year of the project, a contextualised curriculum for training has been developed with already 16 health centre nurses and 18 final year nursing students on diabetes care. A self-care diabetes guide book has been developed and published with copies handed out. Another big stride for the project has been the increment of diabetes awareness from 7.7percent to 30percent after one year of sensitisation campaigns.
The project has seen the screening of over 1139 persons aged 30 and above in six communities in Limbe health district, with 38 persons diagnosed with diabetes and 311 others identified as high-risk cases. With the results gotten from the field, six diabetes units have been created within health centres and equipped with point-of-care devices to manage diagnosed diabetics. The devices given free of any charges include that of glucose testing, urine analysis, and foot assessment.
The self-care guide for patients was developed thanks to the expertise of Dr. Aminkeng Z. Leke, Vice Provost-Research/Cooperation/Quality BUIB. He is a PhD. Holder in Pharmacoepidemiology from Ulster-UK. He also holds a Masters of Science in Chemical Pathology, BMLS UB.
Dr. Aminkeng developed the guide alongside BUIB’s Vice Provost-Academic Affairs, Dr. Maboh M. Nkwati, holder of a PhD in Nursing from Essex University –UK, as well as an MSc. in Nursing Education, BNS UB. They are all FAIMER fellows (PA-USA).