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Inside-Out Thinking: Crowdsourcing Support for a Student-Led, Cross-Sectional Metabolic Disease Risk Factor and Prevalence Study in a Minority Population of a Middle-Income Country

By: , , , , , & Edited by: Published: 2020 | Product: SAGE Research Methods Cases: Medicine and Health
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Faith-based health promotion may improve outcomes in chronic diseases. We aimed to determine the burden of diabetes and metabolic disease within the Muslim population of Cape Town, as tailor-made interventions can potentially be developed. The prevalence of diabetes in Cape Town has been shown to be higher than national averages. It was not known what the prevalence trends are in the Muslim population. A cross-sectional study design was used. This is an effective model to determine prevalence. Determining the prevalence of disease in a minority population that is geographically spread out with no population register can be challenging. A time space sampling technique was used. The largest congregation of Muslims takes place in masjids, on Fridays, during the Eid festivals and after evening prayers during the month of Ramadan. We describe our rationale for which occasion we used for final selection. None of the masjids had a registry of congregants, so we had to consider what the best method of sampling would be. Furthermore, a large amount of data needed to be collected, and we had to develop creative ways to collect the data in the shortest possible time as well as communicate abnormal results to participants for further potential management. We also describe how, as a student-led team with multifaith volunteers, we were able to successfully conduct this study with minimal funding, overcoming challenges in accessing the masjid as well as using innovative methods of acquiring services and resources.

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