Rs 1,200-cr booster to combat cancer, diabetes

Last Updated 08 July 2010, 19:18 IST

The Rs1,230.9-crore national programme for the prevention and control of cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and stroke has a Rs 731.52 crore component for cancer while the rest of the money (Rs 499.38 crore) would be spent on other non-communicable diseases. It would be implemented in a  80:20 cost-sharing basis with the states.

The programme aims at screening seven crore adult population (30 years and above) visiting hospitals for other reasons to look for early signs of diabetes and hypertension. If the risk factors are found, they will be advised to start the management early thereby reducing the overall prevalence of diabetes, heart diseases and stroke.

About 32,000 health personnel would be trained at various levels to provide opportunistic and targeted screening, diagnosis and management of these diseases, Union Home Minister P Chidambaram said here after a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs.

Massive campaign

A significant chunk of the allocated amount would be spent on building awareness about these diseases through a massive campaign.  With a successful implementation, the Centre expects to achieve behavioural changes in the community to adopt healthy lifestyles, including dietary patterns, enhanced physical activity and reduced intake of tobacco and alcohol resulting in overall reduction in the risk factors of common NCDs in the community.

It would be implemented in as many as 20,000 sub-centres and 700 community health centres in 100 districts across 15 states and Union Territories.  Over 42 per cent of all deaths are due to diseases like cancer, heart disease and stroke which target people in their most productive age group, between 35 and 64 years.

A World Health Organisation report suggests that cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) will be the largest cause of death and disability in India by 2020.  It has been estimated that the overall prevalence of diabetes, hypertension, ischemic heart diseases and stroke is 62.47, 159.46, 37 and 1.54, respectively, per 1,000 Indians.

In addition, there are an estimated 25 lakh cancer patients cases.  Major risk factors for these NCDs are raised blood pressure, cholesterol, tobacco use, unhealthy diet, physical inactivity, alcohol consumption, and obesity which are modifiable. A majority of cancers and CVDs can be prevented and treated if diagnosed at an early stage.

Centre’s prescription

*A significant chunk of the amount will be spent on creating awareness on the diseases through a massive campaign

*Out of the Rs 1,230.9 crore allotted, Rs 731.52 crore will be used against cancer

*The remaining amount of Rs 499.38 crore will be spent on other non-communicable diseases

*The cost will be shared by the Centre and the states on a 80:20 basis

*About seven crore adults (aged 30 and above) visiting hospitals for other reasons are being targeted

*Centre hopes to see communities adopting healthier lifestyles after the programme’s successful implementation

(Published 08 July 2010, 19:18 IST)

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