All citizens above 30 years of age will be screened in 100 districts of the country under the first phase of the programme for universal screening and control of five common non-communicable diseases (NCDs). Gradually, it will cover the entire country and around 50 crore people will be screened under the programme to reduce the disease burden in the country, Health Minister J P Nadda said today.
He was speaking here at the inauguration of national training for universal screening and control of five common non-communicable diseases–hypertension, diabetes and three common cancers of cervix, breast and oral cavity. “NCDs are acquired lifestyle ailments which place a very high burden through the healthcare cost,” Nadda said, adding that the health ministry was working through a two-pronged strategy to address the issue.
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It includes the vaccination of every child to provide cover from 11 vaccine preventable diseases. This is complemented by the goals set under the National Health Policy 2017 which focuses towards promotive and preventive health care and wellness. Nadda said that much progress has been made in past two years and now NCD clinics are operational in more than 400 districts.
Speaking at the event, Union minister Anupriya Patel said the challenge and threat from NCDs has increased manifold and around 90 lakh people die every year due to these diseases. Patel said seven crore people are suffering from diabetes and around 7-8 crore from cardio-vascular diseases.
She said 13 lakh patients of cancer are added every year.
“All these figures explain the magnitude of the issue at hand. They are lifestyle generated and can easily be prevented,” she said while stressing on the need for generating awareness about these issues and collaborating with various stakeholders like communities, NGOs, etc. Nadda also released a set of four training modules for primary healthcare team comprising frontline workers such as ASHAs and ANMs and facility-based service providers, staff nurses and medical officers.