- Name: Paladie K. Mategeko
- Disease: Type 1 Diabetes
- Contact: 0781410268
I am Paladie Mategeko, a 22 years old girl who lives in Gasabo district, Kigali, and I have been living with Diabetes since 2010.
My main challenges during the lockdown were a shortage of medicine and transport difficulties to the hospital. I remember we once used a private car travelling to Rwanda Diabetic Association Clinic, and the traffic police stopped us. They requested us proof like a patient card which we didn’t have and they thought we might be going to visit people. It required me to show them some medicine that I was on insulin and they did let us pass.
Regarding the accessibility of treatment and medicine before the pandemic, they gave us a medicine that would last a month, but they reduced the amount of medicine received to avoid running out of stock during the lockdown. We stayed at home during the lockdown, so the blood sugar rose and caused me to use more insulins.
I am worried to be infected by COVID-19, as people living with NCDs are more likely to be severely ill once contracted with the coronavirus. So, it affects them more than people who do not live with NCDs. Though there is neither cure nor vaccine for COVID-19 yet, the good news is that I am always ready to follow preventive measures against COVID-19.
I warn some people in the community who think that PLWNCDs like me living with Diabetes at this young age are not able. They think that I am waiting to die which is not true because I can live as long as other people. Therefore, I call them for changing their mindset.
It would be good to increase the quality of services at the hospital given to PLWNCDs especially Diabetes. For instance, they should have a doctor at the hospital who only takes care of them and a specific day for them so that they can be treated earlier before serious complications.