Action on Diabetes launches its Ramadan awareness campaign on Saturday in partnership with Qatar’s largest supermarket chain, the Al Meera Consumer Goods Company.

The Action on Diabetes screening stations will be set up in three of Al Meera’s largest outlets in the busy pre-Ramadan period with healthcare professionals on hand to test shoppers and offer advice about healthy fasting.

Sheikh Dr Mohamed bin Hamad Al Thani, Director of the Public Health Department at the Supreme Council of Health – one of the partners in Action on Diabetes – said:

We thank Al Meera for its support of the Ramadan awareness campaign – its assistance will help Action on Diabetes tackle one of Qatar’s greatest health challenges. Early detection is vital in helping people manage the condition and avoid severe complications. I urge everyone in Qatar to attend one of Al Meera’s branches at Mansoura, Airport or Nuaija during this week.’

The Action on Diabetes stations will be set up between 4 pm and 9 pm for a week from Saturday 21 June 2014 in Al Meera branches at Mansoura, Airport and Nuaija. Those tested for diabetes at Al Meera will receive personalised analysis of results, as well as recommendations on how to reduce the risk of developing diabetes in the future. The staff will be present to guide the public through the testing and answer any questions related to diabetes, healthy eating habits and exercise.

The Ramadan campaign is just one of many research, education, awareness and screening programmes led by Action on Diabetes. Recently, Action on Diabetes introduced a major workplace screening campaign that allowed employees to be tested for diabetes at their workplace. As part of this campaign, a custom-made Action on Diabetes screening bus went to various companies around Doha and tested over 2,000 people for diabetes. Al Meera DCEO, Dr Mohamed Nasser Al Qahtani, said:

Today’s fast-paced lifestyle and society has increased our vulnerability to illnesses such as diabetes. Fighting this disease comes in line with the human and social development, as the main pillar of Qatar’s national vision 2030…Because of this, Al Meera has embarked on this diabetes screening and awareness campaign in order to educate our valued customers of the benefits of leading a healthy lifestyle.’

Senior Project Manager at Action on Diabetes, Herluf Nis Thomsen, said:

If diabetes is identified early, it can be managed effectively – that is why testing is so important. For those people with diabetes already and who are planning to fast during Ramadan, it is important they see their doctor to get guidance on how to manage their condition effectively. I pass on my sincere thanks to Al Meera for their support so we can reach as many people in the lead up to Ramadan as possible.’

As part of the Ramadan awareness campaign, Action on Diabetes in collaboration with the Al Meera Consumer Goods Company will be distributing educational brochures from the screening booths to inform the community about the disease, the importance of early detection and tips on living a healthy lifestyle.

Those screened at Al Meera will receive personalised analysis of results, showing threat levels, as well as recommendations on how to reduce the risk.