Saturday, 04 December 2021 04:57 GMT

WHO data initiative to assist Morocco's NCDs control and prevention

(MENAFN- Morocco World News) Fourteen teams of four health data-collectors will visit 6,000 households throughout Morocco beginning October in a new World Health Organization initiative that aims to gather data on the country''s risk factor for non-communicable diseases, according to a June 21 release.

The WHO, assisted by Data for Health, will conduct household surveys using electronic data collection tools to gather data on the country''s tobacco use, alcohol consumption, physical activity, fruit and vegetable consumption, weight and height, waist circumference, blood pressure, cholesterol, and fasting blood sugar, the release stated.

The initiative aims to assist authorities to establish initial data for all NCD-related health issues and will be done using a standardized method to collect, analyze, and disseminate data in WHO member countries called STEPwise approach to surveillance.

Hicham El Berri, head of the Moroccan Ministry of Health''s NCDs Division, stated in the release that the initiative would be ''very useful and important'' as the nation lacks in NCDs data.

According to a 2014 data set provided by the WHO, Morocco does not have an evidence-based national guidelines for the management of major NCDs through a primary care approach nor does it have an operational NCD unit within the Ministry of health.

''Knowing more about the prevalence of these risk factors will help Morocco''s NCD control actions,'' Leanne Riley, head of the WHO''s NCD Surveillance team, stated in the release.

The initiative is also expected to farthen Morocco''s efforts to meet international commitments to tackle NCDs under the framework WHO Global Action Plan for the Prevention and Cntrol of NCDs 2013-2020 (resolution WHA66.10).

The action plan was adopted following the 66th World Health Assembly and the Sustainable Development Goals, held in May 2013, and aimed to achieve premature mortality from NCDs by 25 percent in 2025, according to information on the WHO''s website.

As the main cause of death worldwide, the four main NCDS - cardiovascular disease, cancer, chronic lung diseases and diabetes kill three in five pople worldwide, according to the WHO. Policy changes and public engagement in issues of health could prevent premature deaths from NCDs.

NCDs were estimated to account for 75 percent of the 206,000 deaths in 2014 in Morocco and there is a 23 percent chance people between ages 30 and 70 in Morocco die because of the four main NCDs, according to the 2014 data set.

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