Policy Roundtable on Non-communicable Diseases
Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) are a growing cause of concern globally. According to WHO, NCDs are estimated to kill approximately 40 million people each year globally, accounting for nearly 70% of all deaths. Pakistan, facing a double burden of disease, is ranked 7th in the world for diabetes prevalence. WHO reports high smoking levels in Pakistan, with 31.8% men and 5.8% women currently using tobacco in any form. It coupled with unhealthy diet options results in one in four adults over the age of 18 being hypertensive and 40% of the population over the age of 40 suffering from cardiovascular disease. Realizing these challenges, the Primary and Secondary Healthcare Department (P&SHD) launched the Prevention and Control of Non-Communicable Disease Program in 2016, with the goal to reduce the burden of morbidity, mortality and premature mortality related to NCDs.
To-date, the Prevention and Control of Non-Communicable Disease Program has screened nearly 2 million people through their 130 screening desks supported by 40 NCD clinics established in public sector health facilities. This has been supported by training of 666 doctors and 842 paramedics for NCD management.
To address the growing burden of disease, a roundtable was organized by PMU-PPHA with Prevention and Control of Non-Communicable Disease Program and Imperial College London. The objectives of the event were as follows;
- 1. Understanding the impact of NCDs towards achieving SDGs and UHC
- 2. Addressing challenges in reducing the double burden of disease
- 3. Summarizing Initiatives taken by the Punjab Government
- 4. Deciding on Way forward - Policy Directions
The participants appreciated the NCD efforts at primary and secondary level, while point out the integration of information from tertiary level. A few participants also highlighted the gaps in current post graduate training, including limited focus on primary/ preventive care and family medicine. Undertaking requisite surveys to collect input indicators for universal health coverage estimation was marked as a priority.
The roundtable was attended by eminent public health professionals and sector experts from both public and private sector. Professor John Chambers, leading cardiovascular epidemiologist from Imperial College London, was present at the roundtable to share his expertise on international best practices in NCD management, and challenges faced globally.
- • Noncommunicable diseases
- • CDC Global Noncommunicable Diseases (NCDs)
- • Noncommunicable Disease Unit
• PPHA holds dialogue on prevention and control of NCDs