The Health Ministry yesterday said that 64 percent of deaths in the Kingdom are caused by non-communicable diseases.
Or Vandine, a ministry secretary of state, during the official launch of the Cambodian NCDs Alliance, expressed concern over the number of people suffering from NCDs.
She noted that the diseases not only affect people’s health and well-being but can also drive families into poverty due to lifelong care and treatment if early detection and diagnosis is not properly done.
“Indeed, the consequences are often devastating for individuals and communities, and also impacts the economy,” Ms Vandine said. “The establishment of Cambodian NCD Alliance is an important opportunity to develop a common agenda and build consensus for action.”
She said that the Health Ministry and a group of partners, including GiZ, P4h, Louvain Coopération, the World Health Organization and others jointly launched the alliance to combat NCDs.
According to a joint press release, 64 percent of deaths in Cambodia are caused by NCDs, including 24 percent from cardiovascular diseases, 14 percent from chronic respiratory diseases and the rest from other problems such as mental and neurological disorders.
With the launch the NCD Alliance plans to expand its services to bring onboard representatives of non-health related sectors to effectively address the wide-ranging causes of NCDs including urbanisation, air pollution, dietary changes, an ageing population and increasingly sedentary lifestyles.
Ms Vandine noted that too much consumption of salt, sugar and transfats, as well as smoking and the harmful use of alcohol are all features of lifestyle changes that can cause NCDs.
“NCDs really affect the living standard of a family who has an afflicted member because these are long term diseases which require a lot of time and money to treat,” she said, adding that there has not been any research yet on how much a patient spends every month for treatment.
The main purpose of the Cambodian NCD Alliance is to contribute to reducing the negative impact of NCDs on the health and wellbeing of the population, including costs to households which impacts the economy, by advocating for increased action on NCDs by all actors and also get commitment from the all relevant sectors to effectively implement national strategic plans.