News By/Courtesy: Daksh Dave | 01 Jun 2020 18:04pm IST

HIGHLIGHTS

  • WHO
  • NCD
  • Treatment

Precautionary and treatment programs for non-communicable diseases (NCDs) have been seriously compromised since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, as per a WHO report published today. The report, conducted by 155 countries during 3 weeks in May, indicated that the effect is worldwide, but that low-income countries are the most impacted.
This condition is of great concern as people living with NCDs are at greater risk of severe COVID-19-related disease and death. "The findings of this study reflect what we've been receiving from countries for a couple of months," said Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organisation.
"Several patients who might need treatment for diseases like cancer, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes haven't yet received the health care services and prescription drugs they need since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Nations must bring balance solutions to maintain that important NCD services continue to exist, even though they battle COVID-19.
The main finding is that in many countries, health services have been partially or completely disrupted. More than half (53 percent) of the countries studied have partly or entirely affected hypertension services; 49 percent for diabetes and diabetes-related complications; 42 percent for cancer care and 31 percent for medical emergencies. In the majority of the countries that replied, the Ministry of Health Employees employed in the area of NCDs was partly or entirely reassigned to support COVID-19.
The postponement of health screening services (such as for breast and cervical cancer) has also been universal, recorded by more than 50 percent of countries. This was consistent with the WHO's initial recommendations for minimizing non-urgent facility-based care while addressing the pandemic.
However, the most common reasons for discontinuing or the care were cancellations of scheduled appointments, a reduction in the quality of public transport, and a shortage of resources because health professionals have been reassigned to support COVID19 care. One of the main reasons for discontinuing services in one in five countries (20 percent) reporting disruptions was a lack of medicines, diagnostics, and other technologies.
Unsurprisingly, there seems to be a link between the extent of interruption to NCD care facilities and the progression of the country-wide epidemic of COVID-19. Services become gradually interrupted as a nation progresses from isolated cases to group coronavirus transmission.
Globally, two-thirds of countries reported having NCD programs in their national COVID-19 preparedness and response plans; 72% of high-income countries indicated inclusion compared to 42% of low-income countries.
Therefore, it becomes essential to focus on the treatment of patients having NCD rather than ignoring them and using all the manpower and funding to treat COVID-19. It is important to not forget about other diseases that are much more lethal and dangerous than Coronavirus.
THIS ARTICLE DOES NOT INTEND TO HURT THE SENTIMENTS OF ANY INDIVIDUALCOMMUNITYSECTOR RELIGION ETCETERA. THIS ARTICLE IS BASED PURELY ON THE AUTHOR'S PERSONAL VIEWS AND OPINIONS IN THE EXERCISE OF THE FUNDAMENTAL RIGHT GUARANTEED UNDER ARTICLE 19(1)(AAND OTHER RELATED LAWS BEING FORCE IN INDIAFOR THE TIME BEING.

Section Editor: Pushpit Singh | 03 Jun 2020 13:55pm IST


Tags : NCD, WHO

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