Over 1500 people from and around Kampala have benefited from a three-day free heart camp organised by Prudential Assurance Uganda Limited in partnership with Uganda Heart Institute (UHI).
The Prudential Heart camp which kicked off on Wednesday 2nd to Saturday 4th was aimed at creating awareness on Cardiovascular diseases as well as give a chance to Ugandans to know their heart health by offering free heart checkups and advice from professional cardiologists and nutritionists.
In addition, blood sugar and blood pressure tests were also carried out.
Speaking on the closing day of the camp at the Railway Grounds in Kampala where the camp has been set, Emmy Okello , a Consultant and Cardiologist at UHI who was in charge of the camp said they received bigger numbers than they had expected, “This shows that Ugandans are becoming aware of the importance of knowing their health statuses.”
“For the last two days, we received over 1000 people who wanted their hearts checked. We expect the number to hit 2000 by end of today,” he said.
According to Okello, of the people checked, 1 in 3 were found with high blood pressure, the number one cause of heart diseases.
Okello appealed to Ugandans to concentrate on doing exercises, avoid adding raw salt in their meals and “Eat healthy foods to prevent heart diseases which might be costly if not prevented.”
He also advised Ugandans to always endeavor to do regular checkups in oder to get early treatment in case there is need.
“High blood pressure can be controlled at a cost of Shs 30,000 to Shs 50,000 per month. However if it is not treated, it can result to heart complications like heart failures/ attacks which are very expensive and costly,” Okello said.
The CEO Prudential Uganda, Arjun Mallik said that Prudential in partnership with Ministry of Health and some media houses had decided to create awareness about the causes of cardiovascular diseases and the need for healthier lifestyle choices because majority of Ugandans do not know their heart status and yet heart diseases are on the increase in Uganda.
“we are thrilled with the success of our campaign. A lot of people have benefited from particularly our heart camp which is good. This is an annual event. Next year, we hope to make it even bigger by adding more testing services and extending it to other parts of the country,” Arjun said.
He further asked Ugandans to endeavor to insure themselves and their loved ones against life and health uncertainties.
“Insurance is not a luxury but a necessity. We have some insurance packages that are affordable and fit the needs of every Ugandan. Every responsible person would love to know that the health and future of their loved ones is taken care of,” he said.
The camp was running under the theme of “Know Your Numbers” which emphasizes the need for regular checkups especially for people above 40 years of age.
Recently Prudential Uganda launched the Prudential Heart Index, a survey carried our across six urban centers of Kampala, Mukono, Entebbe, Jinja, Gulu and Mbarara.
According to the findings, residents of Mukono and Entebbe displayed the healthiest indicators of health, whereas Kampala and Gulu scored towards the bottom of the index.