New book shares tips for improving outcomes of noncommunicable diseases in low- and middle-income countries

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, NC— A new book, published by RTI Press, offers lessons learned from pilot projects implemented to prevent and treat noncommunicable diseases in low- and middle-income countries.

 Improving Outcomes for Noncommunicable Diseases in Low- and Middle-Income Countries discusses a range of approaches to address problems raised by noncommunicable diseases (NCDs). The studies discussed in the book were supported by RTI International.

“Once thought to be diseases of affluence, NCD’s (cardiovascular disease, cancers and respiratory diseases) are now overtaking the developing world at great human and economic cost,” said Ken LeBresh, M.D., senior fellow emeritus at RTI and the book’s editor. “This book provides examples of collaborative projects which demonstrate how improvement in prevention and treatment, shown to reduce the impact of NCDs in developed countries, can be successfully adapted to the developing world by effective collaboration with local experts.”

NCDs disproportionally affect low- and middle-income countries due to lack of detection and treatment, resulting in higher rates of premature deaths. The World Health Organization estimates that NCDs kill 38 million people each year, 28 million of those are in low- and middle-income countries.

Cardiovascular diseases account for most NCD deaths, or 17.5 million people annually, followed by cancers (8.2 million), respiratory diseases (4 million), and diabetes (1.5 million).

Seeing the devastating impact that NCDs are having in poor countries, RTI International is using its many areas of expertise to reduce the health and economic burden in those countries,” said Rachel Nugent, Ph.D., vice president of global noncommunicable diseases at RTI. “We will continue to find ways to create and apply new knowledge and tools for preventing and managing NCDs as we grow our new Global NCD initiative.”

The book highlights seven studies conducted in Asia that discuss a range of approaches to address the most predominant NCD problems, as defined by the Lancet NCD Action Group and the WHO Action Plan.

The book focuses on lessons learned from the following:

  • Addressing barriers to screening and treatment for oral cancers and cervical cancer in India
  • Interventions to prevent and treat diabetes, including a study to evaluate the use of information technology to support health literacy and medication use in patients with diabetes
  • Reporting the development of a microsimulation model to examine low birth weight and obesity in Indonesia
  • Prevention efforts to reduce stroke risk factors, which is the leading cause of death in China and Indonesia
  • Addressing the mystery surrounding the development of chronic kidney disease of unknown etiology in Sri Lanka, which has become a major health challenge

The book is available through RTI Press and Amazon.com.

Highlights

  • Researchers offers lessons learned from pilot projects implemented to prevent and treat noncommunicable diseases in low- and middle-income countries
  • The book highlights seven studies conducted in Asia that discuss a range of approaches to address the most predominant NCD problems
  • NCDs include cardiovascular disease, cancers and respiratory diseases