Health Policy and Health Finance Knowledge Hub
WORKING PAPER 30Non-communicable diseases: an update and implications for policy in low- and middle-income countries
Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) are increasinglyrecognised as the next big challenge for the healthsector in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs).Since the UN High Level Meeting on NCDs, held inNew York in 2011, many studies have identied theincreasing contribution of NCDs and their underlyingrisk factors to the global burden of disease. Thesendings have implications for health services andsystems, particularly in LMICs, where the prevalenceof NCDs is rising, often surprisingly rapidly, and wherethe global debate on health systems has been mainlyfocused on communicable disease and maternal andchild health. This paper aims to update the current picture of NCDsglobally on the basis of the new information on burdenof disease, and to identify the implications for policymakers and development partners in regard to thecurrent and forthcoming policy agendas. The paper draws out the implications of the increase of NCDs for health systems in LMICs, in particular their nancing,service delivery and governance components, andraises the issue of how NCDs might be addressed insetting the post-2015 development agenda.It draws on current debates in three areas and revisitsthe policy implications for managing the challenge of NCDs in LMICs. The three are:
the release of the Global Burden of Disease 2010study (GBD 2010
the forthcoming resolution of the WHO ExecutiveBoard (January 2013) on targets and indicators for monitoring NCDs at the national level;
the impact of NCDs on health expenditure, as healthsystems move towards universal health coverage.
1 Also see
Vol 380, 15/22/29 December 2012, for moreinformation; the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluationwebsite includes several interactive tools to present the dataand analysis by country, region, gender, age group, risk factor and so on.