Announcing Dubai Health Survey Results 2016
Al-Janahi , Al Qatami & Trim
Dubai Health Authority (DHA) and Dubai Statistics Center (DSC) announced the results of the second Dubai Health Survey, for which the data collecting field work started in 2014. The aim of the survey is to get to know the health status in Dubai, as well as the new changes and trends since the first survey that was conducted in 2009.
The press conference for announcing the results was attended by HE Hamid Al Qatami, DHA Chairman, Mr. Tariq Yusuf Al-Janahi, Acting Deputy Executive Director of DSC and Dr, Manal Trim, DHA Executive Director of Primary Health Services.
"We gain our confidence, draw our determination and foresee our future from the directions of HRH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and ruler of Dubai, who always advises us to live up to the best international standards in our endeavor to provide the needs of health care. Also, to instill the culture of early detection of diseases, speedy treatment, health awareness, train national medical cadres, especially in rare medical branches, as well as discover suitable and successful treatments for a number of incurable diseases. He also advises us to focus on researches and studies that help develop the efficiency of DHA and its medical and technical cadres, as well as keep up with the new trends in medical and health sciences, medical equipment and medicines", stated Hamid Al Qatami, DHA Chairman of the Board and Director General
"We convene today to announce the results of the Dubai Health Survey that was conducted in 2014 with the cooperation and coordination of Dubai Health Authority and Dubai Statistics Center. This survey was the result of our belief in the important role information plays in decision-making, hence getting to know the health problems of Dubai residents, which eventually facilitated informed planning for delivering the best health services", Al Qatami added.
"The health survey was a prominent example of cooperation and coordination between different entities in Dubai and a bright example of the hard work and relentless efforts exerted for the public interest. This was achieved by the professionals of both government entities, who worked on training field work talents who collected data directly from homes."
"The survey included both citizens and residents of this good land from all age groups and from both sexes. We sought through it to get to know the different demographic, social and economic data concerning seeking health care and its cost, also lifestyles and risk factors - such as smoking, nutrition and physical activity, leading to chronic diseases. Moreover, those dealing with some health problems such as obesity and chronic diseases. A new section that was not present in the 2009 survey was added to this one; it deals with the health problems of the elderly in Dubai, giving it an important dimension that enabled us to identify the health problems that this social group suffers from; also, the status of their health care so as to facilitate planning for the different health care and social programs that target the elderly in Dubai.", Al Qatami continued.
Al-Janahi stated that this statistical project is considered a strategic one that is part of the statistical support provided by DSC to its strategic partners in general and to the entities concerned with implementing Dubai Strategic Plan 2021 in particular. Al-Janahi emphasized that the survey was conducted in a highly professional way that maintains integration between medical and statistical standards in the different phases of the project. Meanwhile, the special cadres of DHA supervised the health aspects related to the survey, especially that the survey included a number of field examinations and measurements according to approved medical standards, which were carried out by the nursing personnel of DHA. Al-Janahi commended DHA's keenness to conduct the needed statistical studies so as to have an idea of the field medical reality of the society in the targeted health aspects and to drive the planning processes, develop policies and health programs based on these information and statistical indicators. Al-Janahi pointed out that the statistical sample of the survey was designed as per the scientific methodologies and standards that are in line with the health survey objectives and uniqueness. This guarantees that it represents all segments and social groups of Dubai and its planned areas, so that the results have great credibility with a 1% margin of error for all relative indicators expected from the survey, with a high rate of reliability amounting to 95%. This is considered an ideal level for the quality of the survey output as per the international statistical standards.
Al-Janahi expressed his gratitude to HE Hamid Al Qatami and DHA's team for the outstanding level of partnership and cooperation which was one of the most important elements of success for the project. He also expressed his thanks to the General Secretariat of the Executive Council, the General Command of Dubai Police and all those who played a part in this project success, especially the families and individuals covered by the survey sample. He stressed that their cooperation is considered a support of the government's efforts in enhancing health services that will positively reflect on society and future generations.
HE Hamid Al Qatami stated that the results showed that this survey provide comprehensive data for a number of these important aspects, on which we can rely in developing our strategic objectives, creating health policies and planning strategic initiatives that aim at dealing with health problems and finding the best solutions for them, hence improving health and protecting society from diseases. According to domestic and international statistics, chronic diseases are considered the main reason for death globally, while they are also the most prevalent in the UAE. The percentage of death due to chronic diseases amounted to 17.1% in 2012 and it reached 30% in 2014. Some of the factors leading to these diseases are common changeable and controllable behavioral factors, including smoking, eating non-healthy food, lack of physical activity practice and consumption of alcoholic beverages.
"We targeted 4,700 families and they were all visited. Thank God and owing to the efforts of those who conduct the study, we were able to cover 3,298 family successfully, added Al Qatami
HE stated the most important results of this survey as regards lifestyles and the prevalence of some chronic diseases and health problems of the elderly.
Results showed that the general percentage of current smokers (on a daily or non-daily basis) is 21.9% (24.8% males and 4.2% females). It also showed that 7% of those who took the survey were negative smokers.
The results indicated also that 50.5% of those who took the survey ate fruits once daily and 29.9% ate fruits twice daily, while 42.7% ate vegetables once daily and 32.2% ate vegetables twice daily.
The survey showed varied rates of physical activity, yet they do not meet the minimum of WHO recommendations.
As regards hypertension for Emirati citizens, the survey showed that 18.9% of the total Emirati citizens are diagnosed with hypertension (20.0% males and 18.0% females). As regards the total number of Dubai population, 3.2% are males, 5.1% females and 3.5% of the total number suffer from hypertension.
The survey results showed that about 19.8% of male Emiratis and 18.5% of the total Emirati females suffer from high cholesterol or lipids. The percentage compared to the total Emirati population number is 19.1%: 3.9% for non-Emirati males and 6.6% for non-Emirati females and in total 4.3% for non-Emirati population. The rate of those who suffer from high cholesterol or lipids in the blood from the total population of Dubai is 4.2% for males and 8% for females and a general percentage of 4.7%
As regards overweight and obesity, the survey results showed that about 36.1% of the population sample were in the pre-obesity stage (or overweight according to the classification of WHO for the body mass index), while 11.9% of the total sample suffered from obesity (22.5% for Emiratis and 11.5% for non-Emiratis).
As regards diabetes, the work team will conduct field visits in the next phase to obtain the required blood samples to complete the data of the targeted families and sample, to identify the rate of the population infected with this disease. We expect this phase to be completed by the end of 2016. This will be a unique study for Dubai.
As regards the health state of the elderly, the survey results showed that 14.7% suffer from high cholesterol and lipids in the blood, 24.7% suffer from hypertension. Some questions dealt with the care required for the Emirati elderly. It showed that 35.4% suffer a problem that impairs their daily activity, hence require some kind or another of health and social care that has to do with the different requirements of life, for instance 16.4% require support in bathing, 14% need help in putting on clothes and 8.1% need help In eating.
aAt the end of the press conference, HE praised the collaboration efforts with the partners in DSC and thanked all the professionals for their efforts in realizing this important work. He advised all DHA and DSC officials to take advantage of these results and use them in future planning to mitigate risk factors causing chronic diseases that are considered diseases of the era and the main reason for death domestically and globally. Also, to present the best health services and social awareness, as well as form effective partnerships with the concerned government entities local and federal) working in the field of education, health, municipality and media, in addition to partnership with the private sector and the public utility sector to develop an integrated plan to mitigate risk factors causing non-contagious diseases.