Improving community health

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BAPS hosts its first Health Expo to encourage prevention of common medical conditions

The BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, in conjunction with Wentwest, the local Medicare organisation in Western Sydney, recently held the inaugural Health Expo. More than 250 people attended the event at the Mandir in Rosehill.

The Expo comprised multiple activities including talks on topical health issues by medical professionals, a healthcare ‘mini-market’ where various health organisations had set up information booths, as well as separate room for diabetes risk screening.

The aim of the Expo was to educate the community about the population’s most common health conditions, with a large focus on diabetes. Western Sydney is considered to be a diabetes hot-spot with over 200,000 people (or a quarter of the population) likely to be affected by diabetes or pre-diabetes.

An esteemed panel of speakers addressed the Health Expo and took questions from participants. The speakers included Professor Glen Maberly who addressed the Expo on diabetes prevention and management; Michelle Nolan from NSW Health on the topic of healthy lifestyles; and Jenine Dawson from Western Sydney Medicare Local on incorporating diabetes prevention and management into a healthy lifestyle.

Dr Liza Thomas spoke on the topic of cardiac health and Robyn Smith from the Heart Foundation of Australia on the topic of stroke symptoms and risk factors. Dr Vivek Thakkar spoke about arthritis and osteoporosis.

The health organisations with booths at the Expo included the Heart Foundation, Diabetes NSW, Go4Fun, Osteoporosis and Arthritis NSW, National Stroke Foundation, Get Healthy NSW, Wentwest and the NSW Health Local Health District.

Jumping castles and face-painting were also organised for children, allowing participating parents to take maximum advantage of the services on offer.

The Expo was jointly inaugurated by the chief guests Geoff Lee, MP for Parramatta, and the Lord Mayor of Parramatta Scott Lloyd.

Addressing participants, Dr Lee and Lord Mayor Lloyd paid tribute to BAPS and Wentwest for the imitative and commended BAPS for its social work in the greater Western Sydney region.

“Health Expos are a key component of the health and wellness services offered by BAPS,” said BAPS Project Officer Pradeep Jobanputra. “BAPS and WentWest worked excellently together to deliver a noble and educational event in the interest of the community. I am very proud of all those involved including the volunteers from BAPS Rosehill Mandir. We look forward to hosting another Health Expo in the near future.”