Non-Communicable Diseases: A Major Burden
Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) are becoming increasingly prevalent worldwide, driven by increased life expectancy and other complex mechanisms such as urbanisation. Also known as chronic diseases, NCDs are usually long-lasting and result from a combination of genetic, physiological, environmental and behavioural factors. Major NCDs include cardiovascular disease, cancer, chronic respiratory disease and diabetes. NCDs disproportionately affect people in low- and middle-income countries, where more than three-quarters of global NCD deaths occur [WHO]. They are a major burden on household and national budgets and a risk of poverty. Primary prevention of NCDs and access to affordable treatment are therefore crucial to tackling the NCD epidemic.
Focus on Environmental and Lifestyle Risk Factors
Swiss TPH focuses on understanding the impact of environmental and lifestyle risk factors on the aetiology and progression of NCDs. Policy activities assess the potential of structural prevention to slow the NCD epidemic.