Dr. Alex Kumar, Ulaanbaatar

Better Hearts Better Cities, Ulaanbaatar

“Everyone likes and uses a lot of salt”

Name: Uuganbaatar

Profession: Driver

Ulaanbaatar Ger district resident Uuganbaatar struck luck – he was found to have high blood pressure as part of the Better Hearts Better Cities initiative. At 45 years old he is married with four children and knew about hypertension, but never thought to check. He now feels better and his symptoms have gone away. While staring out of the window he reflects: “I hope this initiative will take off and have a positive impact. It will be good for Mongolians and my children. Both my parents had a stroke and died. Everyone has high blood pressure here in Mongolia. It’s bad.” Although unsure of the exact causes, Uuganbaatar says “the coal burning in Gers causes very bad air pollution.” I ask him about salt and his expression changes to that of a schoolboy. He starts giggling and admits he “likes salt and uses a lot of salt. Everyone likes and uses a lot of salt.” Having been treated successfully he hurries away, back to work immediately after his clinic appointment. – Dr. Alex Kumar

Dr. Alexander Kumar is a British doctor and photojournalist whose areas of special interest are expedition medicine, global health and infectious and tropical diseases. Alex has worked in over 70 countries and recently visited Mongolia as part of the Better Hearts Better Cities initiative.

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