Africa adopt PEN-PLUS strategy against non-communicable diseases

Tags: International News

Recently Africa has adopted a new strategy called the Pen-Plus strategy to promote access to diagnosis, treatment and care of serious non-communicable diseases (NCDs).

Pen-plus strategy :

  • It is a regional strategy to address serious non-communicable diseases in first-level referral health facilities.

  • The strategy aims to bridge the gap in access to care for patients with chronic and severe NCDs.

  • It urges countries to establish standardised programs to combat chronic and serious non-communicable diseases to ensure that essential medicines, technologies and diagnostics are available and accessible in district hospitals.


Non-Communicable Diseases :

  • Non-communicable diseases are medical conditions or diseases that are not spread by infectious agents.

  • Non-communicable diseases are also known as chronic diseases because they are long-lasting and result from a combination of genetic, physiological, environmental and behavioural factors.

  • NCDs include heart disease, cancer, diabetes, asthma etc.

  • According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), these cause 71% of deaths globally.

  • The proportion of mortality due to NCDs in the African region ranges between 27-88%.

Status of Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) in India :

  • About 58 million people in India die from NCDs every year (WHO report, 2015) or in other words 1 in 4 Indians are at risk of dying from NCDs before they reach the age of 70.

  • Further it has been found that the duration of 'Disability-adjusted Life Years' (DALYs) due to NCDs has increased by 30% in the year 1990 to 55% in the year 2016 and the proportion of deaths due to it has also increased .

  • NCDs (for all types of deaths) increased from 37% in 1990 to 61% in 2016.

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