Treatment of non-communicable diseases outside the corona is severely hampered: WHO

Prevention and treatment of non-communicable diseases (diabetes, cancer, heart disease or long-term respiratory diseases, etc.) have been severely hampered worldwide since the onset of the coronavirus epidemic. The situation is most acute in low-income countries. The World Health Organization (WHO) said in a survey of 155 countries. According to the agency, ensuring treatment for these diseases is now a big challenge.

World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Gebreasus made the announcement at a news briefing in Geneva, Switzerland on Monday. At the time, he said, some countries had been forced to suspend some health services because of the epidemic.

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The World Health Organization conducted the survey over a three-week period last May. Highlighting the results, the agency’s director-general said that about 53 percent of the 155 countries were experiencing partial or complete disruption of medical services for high blood pressure.

In 49 percent of the countries, the treatment of diabetes and its related complications is being hampered. In 42 percent of the countries, cancer and in 31 percent of the countries, emergency medical services are being disrupted. And rehabilitation services have been disrupted in two-thirds of the country.

Citing tobacco as one of the causes of non-communicable diseases, Tedros Adhanom said that countries’ efforts to tackle corona must be inclusive so that non-communicable diseases can be treated.

Tedros Adhanom added that people with non-communicable diseases are at higher risk of becoming seriously ill and dying from coronary heart disease. But many people with non-communicable diseases are no longer getting the medicine or treatment they need. He added that one of the reasons for the disruption of medical services in almost all countries is the crisis of public transport and health workers. The reason for the crisis in health workers is that many people are being treated for corona.

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