- Chronic NCDs comprise diabetes, high and low blood pressure, cancer, chronic respiratory problems, mental disorders and cardiovascular diseases. Malnutrition and infection at early age prevalent in poor are important triggers for NCDs.
- Low literacy and inadequate information among people are the main cause for non- awareness about these chronic diseases.
Status of burden of Non communicable diseases in India
- Non- communicable diseases are among major causes of death in Indian Population. It is taking heavy toll on country’s demographic as well as over its economy. As per WHO report 60% death in 2014 caused by NCDs and significant number in it is from productive years (ages 30-70).
- A UN report has said that Non-communicable diseases such as cardiovascular, diabetes and cancer can cost the Indian economy a whopping Rs. 6.2 trillion during the 2012-2030 period.
Some of the findings of such report:
- Middle and poor class people are now more affected by NCDs whereas earlier it was believed to affect rich class more due to their lifestyle.
- Malnutrition and infection at early age prevalent in poor are important triggers for NCDs.
- Low literacy and inadequate information among people are the main cause for nonawareness about these chronic diseases.
- These diseases are a huge burden on country’s financial terms as huge amounts being spent on healthcare facilities by government authorities.
- Health promotion for healthy lifestyles that preclude NCDs and their risk factors
- Specific prevention strategies which reduce exposure to risk factors
- Early diagnosis through periodic/opportunistic screening of population and better diagnostic facilities
- Infrastructure development and facilities required for management of NCDs
- Human resources and their capacity building for prevention and treatment of NCDs
- Establish emergency medical services with rapid referral systems to reduce disability and mortality due to NCDs
- Treatment and care of persons with NCDs including rehabilitation and palliative care
- Health legislation and population-based interventions through multi-sectoral approach for prevention of NCDs
- Building evidence for action through surveillance, monitoring and research.
- The recent National Health Policy from Health Ministry covers sufficiently the subjects which try to focus the increased problem of NCDs.
- The policy also aims to reduce premature mortality from cardiovascular diseases, cancer, diabetes or chronic respiratory diseases by 25% by 2025
- The National Programme for Prevention and Control of Cancer, Diabetes, Cardiovascular Diseases and Stroke (NPCDCS) was launched in 2010 with the stated purpose of checking these diseases. The initiative includes screening and early diagnosis of NCDs, promotion activities to encourage healthy lifestyle habits, strengthening infrastructure like hospitals and health centres, deploying more health professionals like doctors and nurses and increasing access to drugs.
The Government should consider a massive investment and effort to prevent and control NCDs and their risk factors in the coming years.