GENERAL SANTOS CITY — Lifestyle diseases like hypertension and kidney disorder have remained as the top causes of deaths in South Cotabato province in the last five years.
Marifort Rodel, health education promotions officer of the South Cotabato Integrated Provincial Health Office (IPHO), said the statistic was based on a report last week of December by the Department of Health (DOH) in Region 12.
She said hypertension, cardiovascular and kidney disorders specifically emerged as the most common cause of death in the area since 2009.
The report cited that around 2,000 residents of various ages died due to hypertension-related diseases while 800 more had succumbed from other cardiovascular disease.
It said 600 residents died due to severe kidney disorders during the period.
“These diseases are highly preventable but more people were dying because of lack of physical activities, improper diet, excessive drinking and smoking,” Rodel said.
The official said the IPHO is currently working with the DOH-12 for the implementation of programs that would eventually lower or reduce the cases of lifestyle and other non-communicable diseases in the area.
She said they completed last year a series of trainings on non-communicable disease for local health workers.
Two years ago, the DOH launched the Pilipinas Go4Health, a nationwide healthy lifestyle movement to help prevent and control the prevalence of non-communicable diseases in the country.
Rodel said the initiative seeks to encourage Filipinos to commit to a healthy lifestyle through “regular exercise, proper nutrition, cessation of smoking and alcohol consumption.”
This year, she said the IPHO will sustain its healthy lifestyle program for provincial government employees.
The program provides cash incentives to employees who successfully carry out the challenge to get fit, she said.
In 2014, Rodel said the provincial government recognized 10 employees for completing the daily Zumba fitness program conducted at the provincial capitol in Koronadal City.