The Executive Director of Health Concern, Mrs Mary Aboagye, is calling on the health sector to focus on preventative health, to reduce non-communicable diseases such as hypertension and stroke.
She said lives would not only be saved but the resources pumped into curative health would be saved for other developmental needs when that was done.
Health Concern is a health training institution.
Mrs Aboagye, who is also a public health practitioner, was speaking at a health conference organised for the Muslim community by Health Concern, in collaboration with the Ministry for Inner Cities and Zongo Development in Accra yesterday.
The conference was held on the theme: “Promoting a healthy lifestyle in the perspective of the Holy Quran,”. It brought together students and members of the Muslim community.
The conference, which saw participants being educated on adolescent reproductive health, nutrition and mental health issues, formed part of a health project launched in 2017 by Health Concern, to educate the public on healthy living.
Mrs Aboagye said with periodic checkups, health conditions could be detected early and managed to prevent further damage to the individual.
Mrs Aboagye indicated that the current target-oriented era where people had to meet targets, irrespective of their health status, was causing the onset of diseases.
“As a result of these targets that people have to meet, they are sleeping late, eating irregularly, living without recreation and not going for medical checkups.
We cannot go on like this”, she cautioned.
Without a healthy population, Mrs Aboagye pointed out that national development gains would not be well appreciated because the health of the people is the wealth of the nation.
She urged members of the public to be conscious of their health and adopt healthy lifestyles that would make them live healthy, happier and longer.
The Minister of Inner Cities and Zongo Development, Dr Mustapha Abdul-Hamid, in his address said, such health conferences were important to help educate the public on ways to improve on their health.
He said one needed to be healthy and strong to worship Allah or God well and urged the Muslim communities to take their health seriously.
While reiterating the need for regular check-ups, Dr Abdul-Hamid, also called for stress free lives.
He said the programme would be replicated across the country in the various Zongo communities to educate the residents on good health and healthy living.
The Deputy Chief Dietician at the 37 Military Hospital, Hajia Hamdaratu D. Wumbei, in a presentation on nutrition, said in Islam, health was second in importance to faith and, therefore, health was a crucial element of the faith.
She called for attention to food, which, she said, was abused by some people, with regard to the time it was eaten and its nutrient content.
She also called for regular exercising to keep the body healthy, as well as the eating of fruits and vegetables.