Making up lost ground in war on diabetes

Offering subsidised health screening in the battle against diabetes is a good move (1.8m Singaporeans to get letters on cheap health screening; Aug 31), but may not prove to be effective.

The take-up rate will unfortunately be low, as evidenced by Japan's 22 per cent and over 30 per cent in Taiwan.

Both countries started offering free basic health screening way before Singapore, since 1996 for Taiwan, and even earlier in Japan's case.

Behavioural change cannot be achieved through education alone.

Grant a discounted MediShield Life premium to reward those with normal body mass index and normal blood test (glucose, cholesterol, pressure) results at the subsidised health screenings.

People are more influenced by incentives rather than moral suasion.

Grant a discounted MediShield Life premium to reward those with normal body mass index and normal blood test (glucose, cholesterol, pressure) results at the subsidised health screenings.

This will surely motivate more people to go for health screening and to stay healthy.

Liu I-Chun (Ms)

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 01, 2017, with the headline 'Making up lost ground in war on diabetes'. Print Edition | Subscribe