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Health Promotion Tools on Non-Communicable Diseases in Africa, is there a gap? By Olla Wasfi

I have worked on finding health promotion tools from different organizations such as the WHO and public health organizations in the different African countries, but it took a lot of work/time to find pertinent tools and information. I have used multiple search engines such as PubMed, Embase, Google and Google Scholar to search the Grey literature as well, but I still did not find all the information I was aiming to find.

An African network is recommended to continue to involve all the key stakeholders and organizations to work together to build a comprehensive tool kit that can be used by healthcare providers, educators and the community to improve their knowledge on NCDs and their risk factors. It is expected that those tools would be in different languages and as simple as much as possible so that they could be reached to all the possible target population.

The WHO has an ongoing network which is “The Network of African Noncommunicable Diseases Interventions (NANDI)” that was established in 2001 (WHO, 2019). Inclusion criteria included: NCD to be regarded as a national priority, and Existence of NCD-related activities. This network currently focuses on cervical cancer and surveillance of NCDs in selected countries (WHO, 2019). A website about NANDI is being developed by the WHO Regional Office for Africa, which will be an excellent source for finding the required information (WHO, 2019). This is an excellent starting point to build on and to involve more stakeholders from the different African countries to ensure the provision of tools in a simple way and different languages to ensure that it reaches each individual. There is also the “Health Promotion: Strategy for the African Region” (WHO, 2013a).

 

The WHO has an excellent “Global Action Plan for the prevention and control of communicable diseases” (WHO, 2013b). As well as  he “WHO Tools to prevent and control non-communicable diseases”, which includes tools for target, objectives and indicators which is a great resource (WHO, 2014). Another pertinent resource is the “ Guidelines for Primary Health care in low-resource settings” (WHO, 2012).

There are multiple sites and useful information/resources but not specific to the African countries. Although these resources can be used but it is usually in a specific language mainly in English such as the CardioSmart resources from the American College of Cardiology (CardioSmart, 2019). Another great resource that presents multiple health promotion tools in multiple languages is the “9th Global Conference on Health Promotion in Shanghai that took place in 2016” (WHO, 2016).

The Kaiser Family Foundation presented information on Global Health Policy with a title on “ The U.S. Government and Global Non-Communicable Diseases” (KFF, 2019) which discussed multiple Global parameters such as the Global situation of NCDs, their impact, affected groups and regions, economic cost and risk factors, interventions, global goals, etc (KFF, 2019).

In conclusion, there are many useful health promotion resources on NCDs prevention and control including ones that focused on promotion tools available in African countries and others that are focusing on tools available from different international organizations.  The WHO has started an excellent network “NANDI”, which if continues with the support of the different stakeholders from the different African countries will be an excellent resource.

References:

CardioSmart (2019). American College of Cardiology. Retrieved from https://www.cardiosmart.org/

Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) (2019). Global Health Policy with a title on The U.S. Government and Global Non-Communicable Diseases. Retrieved from https://www.kff.org/global-health-policy/fact-sheet/the-u-s-government-and-global-non-communicable-diseases/

https://www.kff.org/global-health-policy/fact-sheet/the-u-s-government-and-global-non-communicable-diseases/

WHO (2012). Non-communicable diseases and mental health: Guidelines for Primary Health care in low-resource settings. Retrieved from https://www.who.int/nmh/publications/phc2012/en/

WHO (2013a). Health Promotion: Strategy for the African Region. Retrieved from https://www.afro.who.int/sites/default/files/2017-06/Health%20Promotion%20Strategy%20inside%20English.pdf

WHO (2013b). Global Action Plan: For the prevention and control of non-communicable diseases 2013-2020. Retrieved from https://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/handle/10665/94384/9789241506236_eng.pdf?sequence=1

WHO (2014).  Non-communicable diseases and mental health: WHO Tools to prevent and control non-communicable diseases. Retrieved from https://www.who.int/nmh/ncd-tools/en/

WHO (2016). 9th Global Conference on Health Promotion in Shanghai that took place in 2016 Retrieved from https://www.who.int/healthpromotion/conferences/9gchp/resources/en/

WHO (2019). Network of African Non-Communicable Diseases Interventions (NANDI). Retrieved from https://www.who.int/chp/about/nandi/en/

 

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