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Africa : Africa CDC’s strategies against non-communicable diseases

Noncommunicable diseases are a public health problem in Africa. The progression of these diseases is closely linked to the level of socio-economic development of a country. Lack of education, poverty and other social determinants are associated with these diseases and their risk factors. On the continent, the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is implementing strategies for the control and prevention of noncommunicable diseases.

According to the World Health Organization, of the 38 million deaths caused by noncommunicable diseases in Africa in 2012, 16 million, or 42%, were premature and preventable, compared to 14.6 million in the year 2000. On the continent, the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a specialized public health agency of the African Union, intends to play its part in reducing the spread of these diseases.

Africa CDC is 200% committed to ensuring that, that which we have agreed on today will be fully implemented to the best of our resources and ability. We will work with every country and every partner so that we see this strategy not only implemented but effectively and for the benefit of this continent.

Ahmed Ogwell, Deputy Director of the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Kenya

The health agenda of African countries and of the members of the African Union is gradually converging towards the reduction of noncommunicable diseases and mental health problems which have been at the heart of the concerns of States for decades. Actions are underway to deal with these pathologies, as well as the problem of injuries caused by natural disasters and conflicts, among others. A difficulty accentuated by the disruption caused by the covid-19 pandemic.

We have started the most complex and difficult implementation of this strategy over the next five years and I think we need several meetings to exchange our experiences, share our ideas, discuss the difficulties and challenges to meet, in order to achieve the best results at the end of this initial period. I wish that all Member States make the implementation of this strategy a top priority.

Hala Zayed, Egyptian Minister of Health and Population

The Ethiopian government has started giving priority to noncommunicable diseases and mental health problems, as well as the problem of injuries caused by natural disasters and conflicts, among others, especially in the last 10 years, with the adoption of a transformation plan of the health sector and the development of specific strategic plans for the implementation of integrated prevention and care services with emphasis at the primary health care level. 

Regarding cervical cancer, which is one of the biggest burdens in our country, we now have at least one center per district offering cervical cancer screening and treatment services, which is a total of more than 10,000 health facilities at the lower level. We are also expanding radiotherapy for oncology services which have been reorganized through our pre-hospital care services, including our emergency and intensive care strategy.

Lia Tadesse, Ethiopian Minister of Health

All actors within the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the African Union Advisory Group are reassured that their efforts are appreciated for what is being done. Also, Africa CDC intends to do much more. The implementation of the strategy is underway. 


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