“City of Health” established to mark World Health Day in the Republic of Moldova

National Centre for Public Health, Republic of Moldova

On 9 April 2016, the "City of Health" was established in downtown Chisinau as a temporary "location" on the capital's map, dedicated to marking World Health Day and its main topic – diabetes – in the Republic of Moldova.

The Public Health Centre in Chisinau organized a number of awareness-raising activities and outdoor entertainment. These included: testing of blood sugar levels, calculations of body mass index, tasting of food products intended for people with diabetes, physical activity with professional trainers, and prize contests. Visitors also benefitted from free diabetes consultations with specialists in endocrinology, cardiology and neurology.

In partnership with the National Centre for Public Health and the WHO Country Office in the Republic of Moldova, the Ministry of Health marked World Health Day by conducting a series of information and awareness activities from 7 to 9 April 2016. These included school competitions on diabetes knowledge and the distribution of information materials. Posters, quizzes, pens and t-shirts with the message "Beat diabetes!" were handed out during a flash mob organized in Chisinau.   

Prevention and control of diabetes

Approximately 90 400 people with diabetes were registered in the Republic of Moldova in 2015. This represents 29.2 new cases of diabetes per 10 000 population (16.7 cases per 10 000 in 2004), of whom 3.8% are children.

During the press conference dedicated to World Health Day, the Deputy Minister of Health, Aliona Serbulenco, remarked, "This number is alarming, particularly from the economic point of view, as diabetes largely affects the young and productive population.  What is worse is that over one third of those with diabetes are not known to us. Particularly on this occasion, we would like to use the opportunity to inform the public about the importance of testing blood sugar levels and early detection of this disease."

The WHO Representative to the Republic of Moldova, Haris Hajrulahovic, noted that diabetes control is crucial for ensuring improved surveillance, enhanced prevention and more effective management of the disease.

Measures to prevent diabetes (e.g. healthy eating, promotion of physical activity, services for early detection and treatment) will be included in the new national programme for 2016–2020. Information materials, such as posters and quizzes, were translated into Romanian and shared widely. The information package for journalists comprised a press release, country profile, diabetes fact sheet, posters and quizzes.