Women and Noncommunicable Diseases in Africa (3)

17 October, 2020

NCIS are a product of lifestyle, markets and sales. Passive and inactive consumer-led economic practices create citizens prone to NCDs. Markets invest in what citizens want, whilst the best part of States and governments invest in what people need. It is a 21st century struggle.

My senior family doctor in my inner city practice in the 1980's explained to me that our patients, who died 8 years earlier than patients who lived 5 moles down the road in a more affluent area, "were encouraged to enjoy instant gratification rather than deferred gratification".

One hopes that the digital transformation will engage more families and even markets to enjoy deferred personal and planet gratification and maybe that the shared health record can aid that change in culture.

Women play the biggest role in the education and nurturing of infants and children.

The language, physical and health literacy early years, basic assumptions, norms, values and artefacts of human lives are managed and directed mainly by women. If one accepts some parts of evolutionary theory, children who have survived the trepidations of human development - both prehistory, say 250,000 years - and post history (the period of time supported by remaining written and artistically depicted human activity and story) - must have had extraordinarily well organized, evocative, supportive and compassionate mothers.

The pioneering, combatitive, competitive and aggressive behaviour of men paved the way for human domination of the planet and good pyramid.

Population control, caring for the old and young, supportive, non competitive behaviours, interdependence and compassion seem to be useful priorities for the next three or four generations of planet dominating humans and women seem to have these in abundance.

(Overconsumption is another issue because women have the shopping gene!)

HIFA Profile: Richard Fitton is a retired family doctor - GP, British Medical Association. Professional interests: Health literacy, patient partnership of trust and implementation of healthcare with professionals, family and public involvement in the prevention of modern lifestyle diseases, patients using access to professional records to overcome confidentiality barriers to care, patients as part of the policing of the use of their patient data

Email address: richardpeterfitton7 AT gmail.com