Fighting Obesity With NUMed Health Camp 2018

Newcastle University Medicine Malaysia (NUMed) held its annual NUMed Health Camp on 10 November 2018. Villagers from Kampung Dato Sulaiman Menteri and its vicinity attended the event, which was held at SK Majidi Bahru. The event was organised and conducted by NUMed’s clinical students with help from NUMed clinical staff.

With the theme “Obesity”, the NUMed Health Camp 2018 was aimed at promoting health awareness, with a special focus on obesity. This theme was chosen due to the dramatic rise in overweight and obesity cases over the past few years. It is alarming to know that, Malaysia has the highest obesity prevalence in Southeast Asia. In fact, statistics show that one in 20 Malaysians is overweight or obese.

According to the President of the organising committee, NUMed student Koh Wei Xiang, “People don’t realise the complications obesity brings, such as heart disease and even cancer. My team believes that preventing these diseases is better than curing them.”

Health screening booths offering blood pressure and glucose monitoring, and optical examination, were set up for the villagers who were then given feedback and the opportunity to receive appropriate management for their diseases. Discussion and counselling sessions in regards to diet, smoking and general health were also held to educate villagers on the importance of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Through this event, villagers gained vital healthcare services that they would otherwise not be able to receive due to issues such as socioeconomic factors and geographical location.

In contrast to previous years, the 2018 health camp was organised as a “health carnival.” Throughout the day, a range of fun and interactive activities were held for both children and adults, including futsal, aerobic exercise, health quizzes, and “Explorace” games.

Syafika Amanda Binti, the Vice President of the organising committee, highlighted the event’s dual purpose of giving back to the community as well as training the next generation of medical professionals. “We learn how to contribute back to society by raising health awareness as well as enhancing our communication and collaboration skills. This helps us to become better and more well-rounded doctors.”

Established in 2009, NUMed is the first fully owned international branch campus in Malaysia that offers undergraduate degrees in Medicine and Biomedical Sciences as well as opportunities for postgraduate studies from a UK university. NUMed draws on the legacy of Newcastle University, UK, that can trace its roots back to the early 19th century.

The university is internationally renowned for being one the best British universities for medicine, offering world-class medical education to students from more than 120 countries. Currently, it is placed fifth in the UK by The Guardian University Guide 2019 and in the top 125 (Clinical, Pre-clinical and Health category) by the Times Higher Education World University Rankings by Subject 2018, among others. It also received a 95% Overall Student Satisfaction Score according to the National Student Survey 2017 (subjects allied to medical category).

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