The Ministry of Public Health has announced the start of the implementation of the National STEPwise Survey, 2023 for non-communicable diseases (NCDs) and their common risk factors from May 25.
STEPwise survey is a standardised survey developed by World Health Organisation and will be carried out in collaboration with the Planning & Statistics Authority (PSA), Hamad Medical Corporation, and the Primary Health Care Corporation.
The survey is a second cycle of STEPwise surveys, as a follow up for the 2012 survey, to provide a database on chronic non-communicable diseases and their related risk factors in Qatar such as tobacco use, lack of physical activity, unhealthy nutrition, obesity, hypertension, increased blood glucose and increased blood fat. It will enable MoPH to develop National Action plans, within the National Health Strategy, for controlling these diseases and their risk factors.
The survey will be carried out by visiting more than 8,500 homes of Qatari nationals and non-Qatari residents after a random sample is selected from household lists, based on population census, 2020. The participants of the survey will be in age group between 15 and 69 Years, randomly selected from these selected households.
The survey is conducted by field teams visiting the homes of the families participating in the survey during its implementation period and the visits are carried out from Sunday to Thursday between 4pm and 9pm, and on Saturdays between 9am and 2pm.
The well-trained data collection teams will conduct visits and a questionnaire will be filled out on common risk factors for chronic non-communicable diseases including tobacco use, fruit and vegetable consumption, physical activity as well as physical measurements, such as height, weight, and waist circumference. Urine samples will be collected for urinary sodium and creatinine. Blood tests for blood glucose and lipids by finger prick method will be conducted on the second visit to the household.
MoPH director of Public Health Department, Sheikh Dr Mohammed bin Hamad al-Thani said: “Qatar recognises the impact of NCDs and reaffirms its commitment to tackling them and their related risk factors. The survey data will serve as evidence- based information for formulating action plan under the National Health strategy for tackling NCDs and for monitoring the prevalence of risk factors.”
Nasser Saleh Almohdi, director of Census Department, PSA, stressed the importance of joint cooperation between different government institutions in the fields of health research. Almohdi added that compiling most updated and scientifically accurate data for NCDs and its risk factors is a vital national task, the findings of which will help in improving health services to the community.
Dr Kholoud Ateeq al-Motawaa, head of NCD Department at MoPH and National Team lead for STEPwise survey explained that this survey is important because it provides an opportunity for international comparisons and highlights the health needs related to NCDs in the country. The results of this study will be used to assist the MoPH develop public health programmes that target efforts to lower the risk factors that lead to NCDs.
MoPH has appealed the public for full cooperate with the fieldwork teams conducting survey, who have identification cards and provide them with all the information required including blood and urine tests to complete the survey as fast as possible. MoPH has also affirmed the confidentiality of the information.
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