500 Admiralty residents get free health check

Madam Kamisha Sumadi, 68, having her blood pressure taken yesterday. The event was part of the Health Promotion Board's efforts to encourage health screening and follow-up within the Malay community.
Madam Kamisha Sumadi, 68, having her blood pressure taken yesterday. The event was part of the Health Promotion Board's efforts to encourage health screening and follow-up within the Malay community.ST PHOTO: KELVIN CHNG

More than 500 Admiralty residents went for a free double screening yesterday - first to check their blood pressure and other health indicators, then to watch a classic P. Ramlee movie.

The morning event at Kampung Admiralty was part of the Health Promotion Board's (HPB) efforts to encourage health screening and follow-up within the Malay community.

The residents, mostly senior citizens, also had the opportunity to interact with veteran singer Rahimah Rahim, 64, who shared tips on staying healthy.

This comes against a backdrop of data that had flagged concerns about some aspects of the health of Malays.

According to the National Health Survey 2010, the prevalence of chronic diseases, such as hypertension, among Malay residents aged between 30 and 69 was at 28 per cent, higher than the national average of 23.5 per cent.

In addition, one in six Malay residents aged between 18 and 69 had diabetes, compared with the national average of almost one in nine.

The 2013 National Health Surveillance Survey also showed that Malays had the lowest screening rates for diabetes and high blood cholesterol.

Yesterday's event was open to all, but sought to attract more members of the Malay community.

Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Health Amrin Amin, who was guest of honour at the event, said more Malays are now going for health screenings and are more aware of the healthcare assistance packages available.

"Results take some time to show, but we are making important baby steps and we are getting there," he added.

He noted that outreach events have been done for other communities as well.

 
 
 

The HPB recommends that individuals should go for regular health screenings even if they do not have any symptoms of any disease.

Beyond having their blood pressure checked, Admiralty residents also underwent several other tests, such as cardiovascular screening and blood glucose testing, based on their age groups. Some had booked appointments to check for breast cancer, among other services.

Many welcomed the additional activities, such as the screening of the 1961 P. Ramlee comedy Ali Baba Bujang Lapok, but said the free health check-up was the event's main appeal.

Senior intellectual property administrator Normila Abdul Hamid, 46, who found out about the event from her exercise group, said: "I thought why not do it here rather than trying to find the time to make it for an appointment at a clinic."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 06, 2020, with the headline '500 Admiralty residents get free health check'. Print Edition | Subscribe