Piloting an integrated NCD approach in Uzbekistan
In 2016, Kashkadarya and Fergana regions in Uzbekistan endorsed regional noncommunicable disease (NCD) action plans for 2016–2017. Following this endorsement, on 19–20 August 2016, the WHO Country Office in Uzbekistan organized a series of meetings to discuss a stronger bottom-up approach to NCD prevention and control. The meetings were attended by local governors, community and religion leaders, and representatives of nongovernmental organizations, school administrations and other governmental organizations.
Prior to starting the meetings in Margilan city and Yazyavan district (Fergana region), all participants underwent a cardiovascular risk assessment and received counselling on their personal risk. This allowed all participants to better understand individual and population risk stratification.
During the meetings, all participants supported starting a competition between communities to provide the healthiest environments. A local technical group will develop health profiles of each participating community as a baseline. In one year, the progress between communities will be compared, and the winner who can show the biggest health gain will be announced. The official launch of the competition, supported by WHO, is planned for late September 2016.
In addition, later this year, WHO will support school health initiatives on health promotion, and NCD prevention and management based on WHO recommendations for school health in Europe.
WHO approach to NCDs
In tackling noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) and major risk factors, WHO advocates strengthening population-based and individual interventions compiled in a set of recommendations to countries, including “best buys” (low-cost solutions).
Uzbekistan committed to implement these WHO recommendations through an integrated NCD approach that focuses on evidence-based interventions in 4 areas:
- strengthening health services at primary health care (PHC) level
- strengthening local governance mechanisms through better multisectoral collaboration
- creating supportive environments at the community level
- strengthening public engagement.
WHO support to Uzbekistan
WHO support for the introduction of the integrated NCD approach in the 2 pilot regions of Uzbekistan (Kashkadarya and Fergana) in within the framework of its project on NCDs. The project is financed through the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation, and in collaboration with the Ministry of Health of Uzbekistan and the World Bank project on Health systems strengthening (Health-3).
WHO has intensified its support on strengthening PHC and governance mechanisms in Uzbekistan since 2015. This resulted, for example, in the implementation of the WHO Package of Essential NCD (WHO PEN) interventions in pilot PHC facilities, and the establishment of regional intersectoral NCD steering committees in the 2 regions chaired by the Deputy Governor.