Viewpoint: The New Frontier of Non-Communicable Diseases

Thursday, August 13, 2015

There was a time when non-communicable diseases (NCDs) seemed too exotic to matter in slum areas like Kibera, Nairobi; Dharavi, Mumbai; or Cité Soleil, Port-au-Prince. Until recently, the global health community has focused on immediate threats, lifting millions out of poverty and preventing deaths throughout the world. It’s worth celebrating.

But the progress we’ve seen in global health presents a new challenge. The NCD burden is rapidly rising, as developing countries experience increased rates of diabetes, hypertension, cancer, and other non-infectious diseases. We now realize these concerns matter too.

At Population Services International (PSI), we make it easier for people in the developing world to lead healthy lives, and plan the families they desire in more than 65 countries by employing proven business practices—such as the franchising of health facilities and the marketing of health products and services. While PSI began 45 years ago with a mission to increase access to family planning, for the last 15 years we have focused on infectious diseases including malaria, HIV, and tuberculosis.

Unfortunately, we at PSI, along with the global health community, struggle to determine exactly how to attack the new frontier of NCDs. One solution—expanded through a 2014 CGI Commitment to Action in partnership with the Indian Society of Healthcare Professionals—is our cervical cancer detection and treatment initiative in Uttar Pradesh, India.

Source: The Clinton Foundation (link opens in a new window)

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