September 2018 issue – Deadline for submissions 10-04-2018

Public Health Panorama calls for the submission of papers for a themed issue on noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It will be published in September 2018 in conjunction with the Third United Nations High-level Meeting on NCDs and the 68th session of the WHO Regional Committee for Europe.

NCD 2030: Will Europe achieve the NCD-related targets of the SDGs?

In 2017, the WHO Regional Office for Europe conducted a country capacity survey on noncommunicable diseases that assessed the likelihood that the 53 Member States of the Region will achieve the voluntary targets within the global monitoring framework. The resulting European scorecard projects the following green-amber-red classification:

  • condition Green: European Member States, both individually and on average, appear to be on track to achieve the targets for reductions in premature mortality and the control of high blood pressure;
  • condition Amber: targets relating to physical activity, salt consumption, control of cardiovascular risk and access to essential medicines and technology appear to be endangered, either because they are making poor progress or because insufficient data are available;
  • condition Red: tobacco and alcohol use are declining slowly in Europe and, unless the decline accelerates, will not fall to the aspired levels by 2030; on the other hand, overweight and obesity are still rising, with the momentum building up in children, and it is not anticipated that they will level off by 2030.

The European Region is currently the only WHO region on track to achieve the desired reduction in premature mortality. While this is an achievement to be proud of, the appropriate comparison is not with regions where performance is lower, but with the scope for optimal achievement within Europe itself. If European countries fully implement the “good buys” of low-cost, effective interventions to combat noncommunicable diseases, the people of Europe will have far better prospects than those they face today. If European countries reduce the inequity in premature mortality, paying special attention to the disproportionate death rate among men of working age, overall health and the economies of the Region will fare much better than they are doing at present.

Call for papers

In this special issue of Public Health Panorama, the Regional Office will publish papers highlighting innovative ideas, case studies describing successful interventions and implementation research conducted in countries which have achieved large-scale implementation of cost-effective interventions.

The Regional Office will consider all papers related to the achievement of SDG targets related to noncommunicable diseases in Europe. Special consideration will be given to papers that are:

  • outcome-oriented: presenting results of achievements on the national scale, not merely plans for improvement (e.g. effective interventions on price, availability or marketing of alcohol in a country with high alcohol consumption);
  • equity-oriented: showing how interventions are bringing improvements both in overall trends and across socioeconomic groups, gender, and the life course (e.g. interventions that reduce premature mortality in working-age men);
  • related to solutions in countries with a transitional economy that leapfrog over developments and trends in richer economies (e.g. the use of electronic health records in middle-income countries to improve clinical outcomes such as controlling high blood pressure).

Also of interest are papers that demonstrate a mutual benefit between the targets related to noncommunicable diseases and other SDG targets or goals, for instance, cobenefits with mental health care, injury prevention or climate change mitigation.

Guidelines for submitting papers

We invite papers that showcase examples and research results from the WHO European Region and beyond, intended for policy-makers, planners, researchers, public health specialists, clinicians, educators, civil society and other interest groups working on noncommunicable disease issues. Priority will be given to papers that describe outcome-oriented approaches, successful practices, innovative solutions and lessons learned. In particular, we welcome papers that document experiences in low-resource and transitional economies. Manuscripts may be submitted in either English or Russian, and accepted papers will be published in both languages.

The deadline for submission is 10 April 2018. Authors should follow the guidelines for submission of manuscripts to Public Health Panorama and mention the present call for papers in a covering letter. All submissions will undergo peer review. For further queries, please contact eupanorama@who.int.