Government launches action plan to control non-communicable diseases


The Federal Government has launched National Multi-Sectoral Action Plan (NMSAP) for the Prevention and Control of Non-communicable Diseases (NCDs) 2019-2025.


Boss Mustapha, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), said at the launch in Abuja that tackling NCDs required multi-sectoral approach.


Mustapha, who was represented by Dr Amina Shamaki, the SGF Permanent Secretary on Special Service Office, said all hands must be on deck to control NCDs in the country.


He said NCDs presently rank highest as the cause of death globally, especially in Low Medium Income Countries (LMICs), including Nigeria.


He added that such diseases were major health and development challenges facing the nation and negatively impact on national productivity and the economy.


According to him, multisectoral policies and action plan will guide efforts toward addressing growing threat of cardiovascular diseases, cancer, diabetes and chronic respiratory diseases, among other NCDs.


He announced Federal Government’s resolve to build “valuable alliances with stakeholders to address NCDs and engage in activities that would deliver value to government, health professionals and patients.”


He explained that a framework would guide stakeholders on how to form strategic partnerships for achieving the priority actions on the NMSAP and strengthen the health system for seamless NCDs care and treatment services.


He noted that the framework would provide clarity on the role and responsibilities of the different stakeholders, as well as potential benefits the partnerships may generate.


He stated that the partnership would also outline channels that would be used for engagement and communication between various partners.


The SGF also launched and rolled out the Resolve to Save Lives project, which he said would commence in two states of the Federation namely Kano State and Ogun.


Abdulaziz Mashi, the Permanent Secretary, Fedeal Ministry of Health, said that NCDs affect both the poor and the rich due to changes in lifestyle patterns and socioeconomic conditions.


He explained that worsening security situations globally and nationally also predispose many to mental health problems, noting that prevention, early detection and effective treatment of NCDs would enable Nigerians to have healthier lives.


He disclosed that NCDs are prevalent in low and middle-income countries.


He said that the NCDs multisectoral plan was coming at the most appropriate time and urged Nigerians to hit the ground running.


The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Finance, Dr Isa Dutse, reassured Ministry of Health of its support to put an end to spread of NDCs in the country.


Dutse, who was represented by the Director, Economic Research and Policy Management, Dr Israel Igwe, said that the finance ministry would look into the economic implications of NDCs to the nation.


The UN Resident Representative, Mr Edward Kallon, recommended that the NCDs plan and policies should contain objectives, priorities, targets, timetables, budgets and an integrated monitoring framework in line with related global efforts.


Kallon, who was represented by the World Health Organisation (WHO) Officer in-Charge, Dr Clement Peter, also advocated that the plan be developed in a participatory manner, involving both government and nongovernment actors alike, and responsibilities be assigned in all stages of implementation.


He said that following the adoption of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the UN revised its framework to underscore the importance of NCDs as key component of sustainable development.


The 66th World Health Assembly endorsed the WHO Global Action Plan for the Prevention and Control of NCDs 2013-2020 (resolution WHA66.10) to strengthen national efforts to address the burden of NCDs.


The global action plan offers a paradigm shift by providing a road map and a menu of policy options for member states, WHO, other UN organisations and intergovernmental organisations, NGOs and the private sector.


When implemented collectively between 2013 and 2020, the plan will attain nine voluntary global targets, including a 25-per cent relative reduction in premature mortality from NCDs by 2025.