The Ministry of Health (MoH), in collaboration with Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD) is conducting the third National Health and Nutritional Status Survey (NHANSS) to assess the prevalence and trends of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) as well as their risk factors among the Brunei population, especially risk factors related to nutrition.
The research consists of two phases, with the first phase from October 2022 to January 2023 focussing on common risk factors among adults aged 18 to 69. The second phase will be from February 2023 to May 2023 targetting issues among children and pregnant women.
In the first phase, 5,762 households are expected to participate while some 3,000 households will be interviewed for the second phase. For both phases, trained researchers will visit selected homes nationwide to interview family members and conduct inspections.
During the third NHANSS in Brunei Darussalam STEPS survey (ADULTS) Component 2022-2023 training workshop for fieldwork research assistants, Head of the Non- Communicable Diseases Prevention Unit Dr Ong Sok King at the opening ceremony shared that over two-thirds of premature deaths (deaths before 70 years) in Brunei are caused by NCDs, with the most common being cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, chronic respiratory diseases and cancer.
During the pandemic, nearly all COVID-19 fatalities were in-patients with NCDs or risk factors. Over threequarters of those with severe COVID-19 symptoms had NCDs or risk factors. Dr Ong also cited that the country’s population pyramid shows that the pyramid base has been shrinking from 2001 to 2020. The younger population is decreasing while the older population is increasing.
Brunei’s population is considered ageing, with seven per cent of the population aged 65 and above. It is projected that Brunei will become an aged society with 14 per cent of the population aged 65 and above by 2035. This is an increased NCD burden of the population as older people are at higher risk of chronic diseases, she said.
Copyright 1993 Borneo Bulletin Yearbook All rights reserved.