HEALTH statistics reveal that 82 per cent of people in Fiji die because of NCD related diseases.
Of these an estimated 70 per cent become disabled before they die.
Labasa and Savusavu town administrator Vijay Chand revealed the alarming statistics at the recent launching of the Labasa wheelchair-friendly town saying this was a real and pressing matter that needed to be addressed.
According to statistics released by the Ministry of Health in November last year, 1025 diabetic patients were registered in Macuata alone.
Divisional medical officer north Doctor Pablo Romakin said out of the 1025 patients 421 suffered from complications related to diabetes.
"These complications included stroke, eye problems, hypertension, cardiac problems and foot amputations," Dr Romakin said.
"Hypertension was the most common type of complication suffered by patients with 240 detected to be suffering from the disease in the Macuata province alone.
"However, Macuata headed the number of foot amputation cases compared to the other two provinces of Bua and Cakaudrove recording a number of 52 amputees," he said.
Dr Romakin said young people would be targeted most in their awareness programs.
"Young people are receptive to learn new things and easy to influence and modify their behaviour," Dr Romakin said.
"Parents are also being targeted because they have the authority at home, mothers are the ones preparing food for the family, and if healthy diets are prepared at home, children will adopt these habits and values when they grow old," he added.
Dr Romakin said parents should also serve as role models to their children.