Bur­den of dis­ease shifts to non-com­mu­ni­ca­ble ail­ments

Shift from in­fec­tious dis­eases spurred by un­healthy di­ets, pol­lu­tion, high blood pres­sure

The Hindu - - NATION - Bindu Sha­jan Per­ap­padan

The ‘In­dia State Level Dis­ease Bur­den’ re­port, pre­pared as part of the Global Bur­den of Dis­ease (GBD) Study 2016, and pub­lished in Lancet, has found that ev­ery State in In­dia has a higher bur­den from non-com­mu­ni­ca­ble dis­eases and in­juries than from in­fec­tious dis­eases.

The study used mul­ti­ple data sources to map Statelevel dis­ease bur­den from 333 dis­ease con­di­tions and in­juries, and 83 risk fac­tors for each State from 1990 to 2016. It was re­leased by Vi­cePres­i­dent M. Venka­iah Naidu here on Tues­day.

“The con­tri­bu­tion of non­com­mu­ni­ca­ble dis­eases to health loss — fu­elled by un­healthy di­ets, high blood pres­sure, and blood sugar — has dou­bled in In­dia over the past two decades. Air pol­lu­tion and to­bacco smok­ing con­tinue to be ma­jor con­trib­u­tors to health loss.

“How­ever, the ex­tent of these risk fac­tors varies con­sid­er­ably across the States of In­dia,” said Dr. K. Sri­nath Reddy, pres­i­dent of the Pub­lic Health Foun­da­tion of In­dia (PHFI), one of the part­ners of the In­dia State-level Dis­ease Bur­den Ini­tia­tive (ISDBI).

Spe­cific plans needed

“Many In­dian States are big­ger than most coun­tries in the world. It is nec­es­sary to plan health in­ter­ven­tions based on the spe­cific dis­ease bur­den sit­u­a­tion of each State, many of which are no less than na­tions within a na­tion, if the ex­ist­ing ma­jor health in­equal­i­ties be­tween the States have to be re­duced. This re­quires avail­abil­ity of the best pos­si­ble dis­ease bur­den and risk fac­tors es­ti­mates for each state based on all avail­able data us­ing a stan­dard­ized frame­work,” said Dr. Lalit Dan­dona, Di­rec­tor of the ISDBI and Dis­tin­guished Pro­fes­sor at PHFI and lead au­thor of the study.

“These es­ti­mates are now pro­vided in three com­ple­men­tary out­puts re­leased to­day: the re­port, the tech­ni­cal pa­per, and the open-ac­cess vi­su­al­i­sa­tion tool. Dis­cus­sion with pol­icy mak­ers sug­gests that these find­ings will be use­ful for plan­ning of State health budgets, pri­ori­ti­sa­tion of in­ter­ven­tions rel­e­vant to each State, in­form­ing the gov­ern­ment’s Health As­sur­ance Mis­sion, mon­i­tor­ing of health-re­lated Sus­tain­able De­vel­op­ment Goals tar­gets in each State, as­sess­ing im­pact of large-scale in­ter­ven­tions based on time trends of dis­ease bur­den, and fore­cast­ing pop­u­la­tion health un­der var­i­ous sce­nar­ios in each State,” Dr. Dan­dona said.

“We be­lieve that the knowl­edge base de­vel­op­ing out of the on­go­ing work of the State-level Dis­ease Bur­den Ini­tia­tive can serve as a sig­nif­i­cant pub­lic good, pro­vid­ing in­creas­ingly more nu­anced and cru­cial in­puts for im­prov­ing health of all In­di­ans,” he said.

The re­port, which pro­vides the first com­pre­hen­sive set of State-level dis­ease bur­den data, risk fac­tors es­ti­mates, and trends for each State in In­dia, is ex­pected to in­form health plan­ning with a view to­ward re­duc­ing health in­equal­i­ties among States.

Dr. Soumya Swaminathan, di­rec­tor-gen­eral ICMR and Sec­re­tary, Health Re­search, Gov­ern­ment of In­dia, who closely guided the work of the ISDBI, said: “The ef­fort was to pro­duce an open-ac­cess, good knowl­edge base, which has the po­ten­tial of mak­ing fun­da­men­tal and long-term con­tri­bu­tions to im­prov­ing health in ev­ery State of the coun­try...”


Air pol­lu­tion and to­bacco smok­ing con­tinue to be ma­jor con­trib­u­tors to health loss.

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