Tanzania Medical Students Association

WHY NEED OF REDUCING THE BURDEN ON NON-COMMUNICABLE DISEASES?

More than nine million of all deaths attributed to NCDs occur before the age of 60; 90% of these "premature" deaths occurred in low- and middle-income countries. Cardiovascular diseases account for most NCD deaths, or 17.3 million people annually, followed by cancers (7.6 million), respiratory diseases (4.2 million), and diabetes (1.3 million1). These four groups of diseases account for around 80% of all NCD deaths.

In reality, only 20% of chronic disease deaths occur in high income countries - while 80% occur in low and middle income countries, where most of the world's population lives. The WHO African Region has not been spared from a global epidemic of Non communicable diseases. These diseases are associated with fatal complications such as blindness, renal failure, gangrene leading to lower limb amputations and hemiplegic conditions. In these regions, chronic diseases are projected to account for a quarter of all deaths by 2015.

Non communicable diseases, the silent killers, have insidious onset, debilitating complications and result in painful deaths. The estimated number of chronic disease-related deaths in the WHO African region in 2005 was 2,446,000. WHO projects that 28 million people in the Region will die from a chronic disease over the next 10 years. Children, adults and the elderly are all vulnerable to the risk factors that contribute to non-communicable diseases, whether from unhealthy diets, physical inactivity, exposure to tobacco smoke or the effects of the harmful use of alcohol.

These diseases are driven by forces that include ageing, rapid unplanned urbanization, and the globalization of unhealthy lifestyles for example unhealthy diets may show up in individuals as raised blood pressure- hypertension, overweight/obesity, hyperglycemia (high blood glucose levels) and hyperlipidemia increased.

This year’s conference aims at observing, documenting and declaring the role of medical students and other health professions in the fight against the rapidly increasing NCDs.

Hence the conference will be addressing the following sub-topics:

GOVERNMENT POLICY TOWARDS NON-COMMUNICABLE DISEASES.

ROLE OF MEDICAL STUDENTS IN DIAGNOSING AND TREATMENT OF NON-COMMUNICABLE DISEASE.

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