LAST Saturday’s iCON Punjabi Health Forum -“Living Well with Diabetes and Cardiovascular Disease”- on Diabetes and Cardiovascular Health presented by the UBC Faculty of Medicine eHealth Strategy Office and the interCultural Online Health Network (iCON) Project Team in partnership with health and community organizations was met with an astoundingly enthusiastic reception.
Over 800 attendees participated in the forum with 28 households connecting via webcast from across the province. This forum brought together community members, leaders, healthcare providers, and community health organizations to share resources as well as health information and make peer connections to support each other in achieving greater wellness.
Led by Dr. Gulzar Cheema, the interdisciplinary panel of health experts offered engaging and culturally tailored presentations on diabetes, cardiovascular disease and mental health, sharing information that was relevant to the community and contextualized so participants could easily connect and integrate healthy choices into their lifestyles. Feedback from participants show that many found the event meaningful as one attendee noted that “this is really important and useful” while others are asking for more iCON forums.
The debut of iCON’s Virtual Check-Up ehealth clinic was also a tremendous success. Working in collaboration with physicians and health professional students, over 150 attendees participated in the clinic where they learned through demonstrations how technologies such as biosensors, smartphones, and mobile apps can be utilized to help them track and monitor their health status. This innovative health clinic was incorporated during the Open House to offer participants a chance to learn about chronic disease risk factors (blood pressure, BMI, and waist circumference) and experience how technology can be used to assist them in achieving better health.
In offering chronic disease self-management strategies and support, iCON provides culturally relevant, language-appropriate educational resources online to accompany materials presented at public forums. A recording of the live webcast of the forum will be archived shortly and available to view on the iCON website ( iCON plans to continue hosting more events in 2014 in Punjabi, Cantonese and Mandarin. These events will explore prevention and self-management of other chronic diseases.