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The following HEALTH REPORT was published as a 'Feature Story' in our Society's newsletter -
Banaba/Ocean Island News - Issue No. 21.
This survey was one of the first of it's kind taken on Rabi and organised by Japanese Society member - Manabu Kitaguchi. Manabu was working with JICA as a Japanese Volunteer Abroad at the time. Our special thanks go to fellow volunteer Noriko Hayashida for supplying the Society with this important information. Noriko is currently working as a nursing sister at Lautoka Base Hospital in Fiji, while Manabu Kitaguchi has returned to Japan to take up a position with IMADR - International Movement Against All Forms of Discrimination and Racism, in Tokyo Office. A copy of this report has also been forwarded to Fiji's Health Ministry in Suva.
Noriko Hayashida conducting Blood Pressure Checks on Rabi Island
Voluntary Medical Check up for Public in Rabi Island
Written by Noriko Hayashida
The Medical Staff responsible for the Health Survey and Public Health Care Video Show were -
1 - MEDICAL TESTS CONDUCTED
2 - EDUCATION OF HEALTH & NUTRITION
Distributing pamphlets on -
3 - CHECK HEALTH CONDITION AND DAILY LIFE IN RABI
Survey health conditions and daily life to understand their medical history, family history, dietary life and frequency of medical check up.
4 - THE PEOPLE ATTENDING MEDICAL CHECK UP
20 Years old and over.
5 - NUMBER OF PEOPLE WHO ATTENDED MEDICAL CHECK UP
Here is a sample of the list of questions that were asked in our Health Survey and the survey’s findings.
Health Survey - Questionnaire
1. Have you had any disease?
2. Does any of your family have diabetes, hypertension, over weight or heart disease?
3. Do you smoke?
4. Do you take alcohol?
5. Do you drink YAQONA? (Kava)
6. Do you do good exercise?
7. What kind of job do you do?
8. What time do you go to bed every night?
9. What time do you get up every morning?
No.People 1 3 12 22 13 5 1
10. What did you eat during lunch time?
(22) Tapioca, (17) Rice; (4) Cassava; (1) Breadfruit, Fish; Meat, vegetables, instant noodles, daro, roti.
What time did you eat lunch time?
No.People 1 1 15 4 16 11 1
11. What did you eat during breakfast?
(17) Tapioca; (11) Bread; (9) Rice; (6) Biscuit; (2) Cassava, Oatmeal; (1) Donuts; Crackers, Potato, Daro.
What time did you eat breakfast?
No. People 1 3 10 2 30 1 8 1
12. What did you eat for supper last night?
(26) Rice; (18) Tapioca; (4) Cassava, Breadfruits, (2) Bread, Daro, (37) Fish; (4) Meat, (7) Vegetables
What time did you eat supper last night?
No. People 1 2 1 17 1 24 8 1 1
13. Do you have 3 meals a day?
Of the People who said ‘NO’ (4) Males (19) Females
Males - (2) No jobs; (1) Fisherman; (1) Farmer.
14. When you cook a meal, do you think about nutrition? (Only women)
6 - RESULTS OF MEDICAL CHECK UP
7 - RABI ISLAND AND DIABETES
Diabetes is caused by lack of Insulin which is one of the hormones produced by the pancreas.
We know many people have diabetes in Rabi Island, This is a very serious problem there.
When we surveyed the people in Loa village, Buca Bay, Vanua Levu, which is one of the typical Fijian Villages in this district, people didn’t have diabetes there.
We understand in both places the root crops and rice are the main dish. Also we understand that many people of Loa village eat vegetables for side dishes, and many people of Rabi eat fish for side dishes, and less eat vegetables.
The diet of Rabi people is nutritionally imbalanced, because food prices are high, and food are not enough in Rabi Island, so I think diabetes occurs in Rabi because of the imbalance of nutrition.
Also many people are under exercised in Rabi Island. I think this is also a big problem that could lead to diabetes.
The most important thing is for all people to have a clear knowledge of diabetes, for example:
8 - RABI ISLAND AND CIGARETTES
37% of the people smoke in Rabi Island. This is a higher than other places. The Average smoking in a day is 11.3 cigarettes.
Also the number of women smoking is triple than that of males smoking. This is very interesting data, because males are smoking more than women in Japan and developed countries.
Smoking isn’t a traditional habit in Rabi Island, It is just that they like smoking.
The measure of non-smokers has been carried out by the WHO and many organisations in the world now, but this research is late in Fiji. We must educate people about the many diseases that are caused by smoking, for example:
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