Governments & Organisations
Collaboration breeds Success!
Nutrition is everybody's business. While traditionally we've used a 'healthcentric' approach to try and address nutrition and NCD's experts are now recognising the need for a multi-sectorial approach including all divisions from trade and finance to cultural and education.
Click on your area of interest to find out more or read more about the new NCD Roadmap and exciting new partnerships in the field. Or visit the Pacific NCD Network website for more information on key developments, reports and meetings in the Pacific.
Energy and Transport
The Pacific Non-Communicable Disease (NCD) Roadmap
Non- Communicable Diseases (NCDs) such as heart disease, cancer and diabetes account for 70-75% of all deaths in the Pacific Islands. Many of these deaths are premature (occurring before the age of 60) and preventable. In the Pacific, their prevalence looks set to increase as risk factors for NCDs prevail. In fact, the top 10 countries with the highest prevalence of overweight and obesity worldwide lie in the Pacific Islands.
Several NCD-related programs are already financially unsustainable. For example dialysis for diabetes patients can cost an average of USD$40,000 per patient per year – yet two‑thirds of patients die within two years. NCDs are also burdening potential labour productivity and economic growth through disabilities such as stroke and premature death. Given the high level of risk factors for NCDs in the region and the insufficient investments in primary and secondary prevention strategies to date, these economic and social burdens are expected to continue increasing.
Fortunately, many NCDs are often preventable, or their health and financial burdens can at least be postponed. Some interventions are even cost-saving, paying for themselves. In recognition that preventable NCDs undermine social and economic development in the Pacific and urgent action is required, two important developments have occurred in 2014 – the establishment of the Pacific NCD Partnership and the adoption of the NCD Roadmap.
The NCD Roadmap was produced by the Quintilateral (Australia DFAT, NZ MFAT, SPC, World Bank and WHO)partners in Health, based upon a request from Forum Economic Ministers to develop a Roadmap for strengthening a multi-sectorial approach to NCD prevention and control in the Pacific region. While nutrition and NCD prevention has traditionally been placed in the health basket, the Roadmap recognises that overcoming the epidemic cannot be done by the health sector alone and require's political will and a collaborative effort from all areas including health, education, trade and agriculture.
The Roadmap provides a range of strategies aimed at reducing NCD burdens and their economic cost, in individual countries and the region. Effective implementation of the recommendations in the Roadmap is the most likely way of 'bending' the cost curve for NCD treatments downwards, putting countries on the path to more sustainable financing.
Four key strategies are recommended for adoption by all Pacific Island countries to form the basis of their own Country NCD Roadmaps.
These were selected because they directly address the key drivers of the NCD epidemic in all countries of the Pacific region; involve ‘best buys’ for Governments based on cost-effectiveness; are technically, financially and administratively feasible in all Pacific island countries; and they complement and strengthen existing policies, commitments, and systems. The four key strategies applicable in all countries of the Pacific are:
- Urgently strengthen tobacco control, including by raising excise duties to 70% of the retail price;
- Reduce consumption of food and drink products that are directly linked to obesity, diabetes, heart disease and other NCDs in the Pacific through targeted taxes, better regulation and improved public understanding of how food and drink can be drivers of NCDs
- Improve the efficiency and impact of the existing health dollar by reallocating scarce health resources to targeted primary and secondary prevention of cardiovascular disease and diabetes including through the PEN package of ‘best buys’; and
- Strengthen the evidence base for better investment planning and program effectiveness to ensure interventions work as intended and provide value for money.
These four key strategies recommended for adoption by all countries in the Pacific are supported by a menu of over 30 other interventions that governments can also adopt depending upon the nature of the NCD burden in the country, the risk factors, and the country’s available resources. Some countries will identify alcohol control as another key priority for NCD control given their country circumstances. Other countries will identify childhood and adolescent obesity. The Roadmap identifies specific actions that can be taken by all Ministries, including the Economic Ministries. It outlines the possible cost and revenue implications, and potential ‘winners and losers’ of any intervention. Taking firm action on NCDs involves some financial costs and political challenges, but the costs of inaction are much higher on individuals, families, society, the economy and national budgets.
Template for Individual Countries Roadmaps
Menu of 30 Interventions for NCD Prevention
Pacific NCD Partnership
The Pacific NCD Partnership's objective is to strengthen and coordinate the necessary capacity and expertise to support Pacific SIDS to significantly progress the prevention and control of NCDs in order to meet the globally agreed NCD targets. In particular through sharing information and to maintain an inventory of ongoing NCD Roadmap relevant actions in countries and the region by partners, countries and civil society.
Launched at the SIDS conference in Samoa the Partnership's goal is for a better networked alliance of the necessary stakeholders and does not seek to create a new organisation or new, regionally-driven programmes of support or technical assistance.
The partnership intends to encourage national stakeholders to target big early wins, best buys, outlined in the NCD Roadmap. Current members of the Partnership include Pacific Island Forum Leaders, Pacific Ministers of Health, Pacific Islands Permanent Missions at the UN, PICTs, SPC, PIFS, WHO, UNDP, World Bank, Australia DFAT, NZAP, US Department of State, NCD Alliance and PIHOA.
"There are no short cuts and the journey is a long one, but with the Pacific NCD Partnership, the people of the region have a better chance of halting and eventually reversing the NCD crisis. After all, every death is a tragedy, every loss a mother, father, sister or brother."
- Dr Colin Tukuitonga, Director-General of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC)
For more information visit the
Pacific NCD Network, here.
For more information on the NCD Roadmap and Pacific NCD Partnership visit www.pacificncdnetwork.org or follow the links below:
Secretariat of the Pacific Community
Pacific NCD Summit
Pacific Islands’ leaders and ministers, and officials from regional and global development agencies, gathered in the Kingdom of Tonga from 20-22 June 2016 for the first ever Pacific NCD Summit, follow the link to learn more about the conference and see key presentations.
Stronger together- Pacific NCD Partnership for a Multi-sector Approach to Prevent and Control NCD’s
The burden of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) on small island developing states (SIDS) is well documented. Sadly it does not look like it will get better anytime soon. Thousands of people prematurely lose their lives to NCDs each year and thousands more lives are affected adversely, either directly or indirectly. Read more.
Small Island and Developing States Conference update:Pacific NCD Partnership
Involving Pacific Island Forum Leaders, Pacific Ministers of Health, Pacific Islands Permanent Missions at the UN, PICTs, SPC, PIFS, WHO, UNDP, World Bank, Australia DFAT, NZAP, US Department of State, NCD Alliance, PIHOA. The Partnership's objective is to strengthen and coordinate the necessary capacity and expertise to support Pacific SIDS to significantly progress the prevention and control of NCDs in order to meet the globally agreed NCD targets. Read more.
World Bank Report
Non-Communicable Disease (NCD) Roadmap Report
This is a background document on preventing and controlling Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) in the Pacific, circulated June 2014 for consideration by the Joint Forum Economic and Pacific Health Ministers' Meeting held in July 2014. There are essentially three arguments why the Pacific is facing an NCD crisis: a health argument, an economic argument; and a political argument. Read more and access report.
Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat
Pacific Ministers Commit to Fight Against NCD’s
HONIARA, July 11, 2014 – Forum Economic Ministers and Pacific Health Ministers committed to take proactive actions against the growing health and economic impact of the Non-Communicable Disease (NCD) crisis in Pacific Island Countries. At their joint meeting, the Economic and Health Ministers endorsed a joint statement with concrete actions to address NCDs.
“We have an opportunity to make a significant difference in addressing NCDs,” said Hon. Gordon Darcy Lilo, Prime Minister of Solomon Islands in his opening remarks to the joint meeting. “Let us be bold to try new things, and to do more than what we have done before; as outlined in our NCD roadmap.” Read more.