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80pc deaths are related to NCDs


Jun 20, 2022 05:13:51 PM

80pc deaths are related to NCDs Studies have confirmed that 80 per cent of all deaths in Fiji are related to Non-communicable diseases of which 34 per cent are attributed to cardiovascular disease and 22 per cent with diabetes mellitus.

Fiji National University’s College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences (CMNHS) Head of Pacific Research Centre for the Prevention of Obesity and Non-Communicable Diseases (C-POND) Dr Gade Waqa while revealing this statistic said while a lot of research has been conducted, the greater challenge lies in disseminating the studies to policymakers.

Speaking during a workshop as part of an evaluation study to evaluate the implementation of the World Health Organisation’s Package of Essential Non-Communicable (PEN) Disease Interventions for primary health care, she said their aim to set a minimum standard for the management of NCDs integrated within primary care to prevent, detect, treat, and manage people with a high risk.

The workshop was facilitated by primary investigators of the study, Professor Stephen Jan and Dr Bindu Patel of The George Institute for Global Health (TGIGH), University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia.

The WHO PEN Program is a prioritised set of a cost-effective comprehensive package of clinical services for diabetics and hypertensives.

It consists of lifestyle counselling, monitoring and control of blood pressure and blood glucose, treatment with essential NCD medication, and proactive prevention and management of complications.

The FNU had included the PEN standards in specific programmes in 2021, to ensure graduates are well versed with the PEN model when joining the workforce.

The university also runs the Postgraduate Diploma in NCD’s and Master of Public Health in NCDs programmes to assist in national efforts of addressing the NCDs epidemic in the country.

PEN implementation in Fiji commenced in 2012 with the country applying Protocol 1 - Integrated management of diabetes and hypertension and Protocol 2 – health education and counselling on healthy behaviours in special outpatient departments.

By Reginald Chandar


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