Nigeria joins in call for NCDs prioritisation in Africa — Nigerian Pilot News
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Nigeria joins in call for NCDs prioritisation in Africa

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Context, stakes and promises of nationhood

The Federal Government has joined in the regional call for renewed prioritisation of Non Communicable Diseases, NCDs, which has remained a silent killer of Africans at the 68th Regional Committee for Africa Meeting at Dakar, Senegal.

World Health Organisation, WHO, Regional Director, Dr. Rebecca Moeti who spearheaded this call at the opening of the African meeting lamented that the African region has the highest level of hypertension in the world with about 30% of adults suffering from the heart disease.

Moeti similarly noted that there is a growing trend of adult onset of Diabetes and obesity reaching epidemic proportions among women in Sub-Saharan Africa, and also about 150, 00 deaths from tobacco related diseases have been recorded.

Reacting to the call, Nigeria’s Minister of Health, Professor Issac Adewole said that Nigeria is committed to tackling NCDs through implementation of appropriate and effective policies and strategies.

According to the minister, Nigeria has achieved a lot by restricting illicit tobacco trade and enforcement of anti-tobacco legislations, adding that with the implementation of the Step Survey, the country would be able to accurately determine the burden of NCD. He disclosed that Nigeria is currently discussing with WHO on the conduct of a pilot project to treat all hypertensive patients in Ogun and Yobe States.

He said that President Buhari’s support to the health sector would ensure the attainment of Universal Health Coverage for all Nigerians.

Dr. Moeti therefore urged Member States to intensify pursuit of some proven public health policies and strategies to address the NCDs such as ‘increased taxation banning advertising, having mandatory health warnings for tobacco co products and alcohol, and most importantly engaging other sectors such as Trade that play such important role in this work’.

Meanwhile, Director General of WHO, Dr. Tedros Ghebreyesus, advocated for unity among all the actors, from across governments and across UN family, with a call for all to leverage on their collective strength.

Nigerian Pilot reports that the 5-day meeting is attended by Health Ministers from African Countries, as well as participants from Academia, Donor Agencies and the UN.

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