Abu Dhabi, September 18 2013: Imperial College London Diabetes Centre is set to host more than 140 medical specialists at the inaugural Advanced Diabetes Conference this coming weekend (September 20-21 2013).
Set to be an annual event, the expert speaker line-up will table trending topics including thyroid disorders, renal complications, diabetes in children, as well as bariatric surgery.
Dr Nader Lessan, Consultant Endocrinologist at Imperial College London Diabetes Centre and Honorary Lecturer at Imperial College London, noted that bariatric surgery is shown to be particularly useful for those living with both diabetes and obesity. He is also a member of the conference organising committee.
“The pros and cons of bariatric surgery will come under hard debate as demand for the procedure is pegged to rise,” he said.
Dr Nader also confirmed that Her Excellency Professor Maha Taysir Barakat, the director general of Abu Dhabi’s Health Authority (HAAD) will chair the conference.
According to the conference schedule (www.diabetesconference.icldc.ae/programme) Professor Maha will lead the opening session with a keynote address that is expected to offer some new insights to help manage diabetes prevalence in the UAE, presently ranked 11th worldwide.
More than 371 million people worldwide are living with diabetes, citing the latest figures from the International Diabetes Federation suggesting that the condition affects 18.9 per cent of the UAE population.
“Almost 50 per cent of people living with diabetes are not aware of their condition,” Professor Maha advised.
It is Professor Maha’s second official visit to ICLDC in recent weeks following the launch of a nationwide grass roots initiative, Start Walking., when she was joined by Daman’s CEO Dr Michael Bitzer, among others.
Under the patronage of Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Start Walking., part of Diabetes-Knowledge-Action, ICLDC’s long-running public health awareness campaign, invites individuals and corporates to host community events and mini-walks, with more than 750,000 steps chalked up in the first eight weeks alone.
Dr Nader advised that conference delegates are also being invited to take part in Start Walking, with a Walk Around The Centre scheduled during day one. He expects more than 100 medical specialists to take part.
“Of course, medical insights and procedures are crucial in the research and treatment of diabetes and its many related complications. However, we can’t stress enough that it is the smart, simple steps of a balanced diet and regular exercise that help manage and even prevent diabetes.
“Advanced Diabetes Conference is going all-out to support these two prongs by practicing what we preach and walking a kilometre around ICLDC, contributing 200,000 steps to the Start Walking. target.”
Professor Maha confirmed that maintaining a healthy diet and taking a 30-minute brisk walk every day has been shown to reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes by up to 58 per cent.