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Article Title: Warning Sign: Worsening Health Conditions of Thai People
Warning Signs: Worsening Health Conditions of Thai People
A researcher from Chulalongkorn University has followed the health problems facing elderly people and the expansion of disease among the population of Thailand. The research was conducted to test the “expansion of sickness” hypothesis, and showed that the number of people becoming sick or disabled has been increasing. It might also reflect that Thailand's public health and health care system are below expectations.
Dr. Sootthichai Jitapanthkul from the Department of Medicine in the Medical faculty of Chulalongkorn University, along with the director of the Educational Service Center of Chulalongkorn University and research teams from many institutions, spent more than 10 years studying “the Expansion of Chronic Disease and the Handicapped Conditions among the Population of Thailand: Hypothesis Developed from Research Done among Elderly Citizens” (published in the Journal of Gerontology and Geriatric Medicine, year 1, volume 1, page 42 – 50, 2000). The study also included research called “Health Problems of the Elderly in Thailand.” (This research was reported to Thailand's Public Health Research Institution and published in 1999). Dr. Sootthichai stated that the data from the two studies suggested that there might be the expansion of disease – especially chronic disease - among the population of Thailand. This expansion of chronic disease has worsened the health condition of the population. In addition, the studies also revealed that there might be an increase of handicap conditions and disabilities. Based on the studies, there will need to be more research done, with systematic and continuous data collection being done on a national level. This will help prove the hypothesis and confirm that the number of people becoming sick or disabled is increasing. Doing this will also reflect the need to improve the health care system and public health in Thailand.