WHO/Europe steps up efforts to strengthen capacity in NCD prevention and control in central Asia and eastern Europe


From 18 to 23 April 2016, the Higher School of Health Administration of the I.M. Sechenov First Moscow State Medical University hosted the second Moscow training course on the prevention and control of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) in the countries of central Asia and eastern Europe.

Participants included 29 health policy-makers and professionals responsible for NCD prevention programmes from 11 countries: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Republic of Moldova, the Russian Federation, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.

The six-day course focused on a WHO country package that comprises 15 priority interventions for the prevention and control of NCDs. The main course modules included:

  • setting up/strengthening a sustainable programme for the prevention and control of NCDs based on national resources;
  • setting up/strengthening a system of NCD surveillance capable of assessing progress towards the United Nations time bound commitments (2018) and the Sustainable Development Goals (2030);
  • making progress on population risk reduction with measurable results;
  • making progress on clinical preventive and high-risk approaches to the control of NCDs; and
  • working in groups based on national experience.

Course description

The course programme comprised a wide range of interactive events, including roundtables and moderated discussions on lessons learned in strengthening the national response to NCDs, and implementation of the 15 priority interventions in the country package. The Russian population-based cancer register, based at the National Medical Radiological Research Centre of the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation, was demonstrated, as well as a successful tobacco quit line based at the St Petersburg Research Institute of Phtisiopulmonology.

A live video connection with 3 federal subjects of the Russian Federation – the Republic of Udmurtia, Lipetsk region and Samara region – introduced course participants to mechanisms for reporting statistical data on morbidity in children and adults to the federal cancer register in accordance with the International Classification of Diseases for Oncology.  

As part of group work, course participants developed and presented posters containing a set of cross-sectoral measures aimed at overcoming barriers and difficulties in the implementation of the country package interventions.

The course was developed by a multisectoral team consisting of policy-makers and health professionals, epidemiologists, global health and experts in evidence-based medicine, demographers, experts on development of integrated prevention programmes, including representatives of the I.M. Sechenov First Moscow State Medical University, the National Research Center for Preventive Medicine, the Federal Research Institute for Health Organization and Informatics, the National Medical Radiological Research Centre and WHO/Europe staff.

The training course was organized by WHO/Europe and the WHO Collaborating Centre on Training and Education of Health Policy-makers in Prevention and Control of NCDs, with the support of the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation.