Ministry of Health & Social Development
Release Date:
Tuesday, 5 November 2019 - 4:59pm



I extend greetings to everyone at home and abroad. According to the World Health Organization, chronic diseases continue to be on the incline globally. It is expected to surge from 46 percent of the world’s population to 57 percent by 2020. Almost half of the chronic disease-caused deaths are attributable to cardiovascular diseases, obesity and diabetes.

This is a major cause for concern for us here in our Territory as local cases have sored to at least 3500 residents diagnosed with diabetes. Please allow me to further emphasize that this number may very well increase at a faster rate; putting at-risk the future of the Territory if we do not actively change our bad habits, now!

As we join our regional and international partners in observing November as Diabetes Awareness Month, I want us to reflect on our current status and analyse ways in which we can improve our health.

I know many of you have heard the clichés of dos and don’ts of being healthier. There are many paths that everyone can opt in making that suit them. The important message is that, doing something is better than doing nothing at all.

I am personally challenging everyone to at least 21 days of a changed health-related behavior. It can be adding a physical activity like walking for 30 minutes a day to your routine or it can be cutting down on your carbohydrate in-take from 5 days a week to 2 days a week. All I am asking is that we change so that together, we can reduce the risk factors that help contribute to making you unhealthy. 

During the month of November, the BVI Diabetes Association has a host of activities for the entire Virgin Islands to partake.  These activities can kick-start your journey to a healthier you.  

A special thank you is extended to the BVI Diabetes Association for all the work they have done in this Territory for the last 40 years. It has been filled with ups and downs but the association never lost its zest to continue serving the people who need the hope to continue, when faced with health challenges. Be sure to visit their social media pages or call the office at 494-4125 for more information on their activities.

In closing, as the Minister for Health and Social Development, I now declare the month of November as Diabetes Awareness month in the Virgin Islands.

I hope that we will all do our part in making better health decisions against preventable diseases like diabetes. The cost is too great if we fail! A cure depends on your action, starting today.  Get active! I thank you.