NCDs Pose Major Threat to Public Health, WHO Reports
By William New, Intellectual Property Watch on 15/09/2011 @ 9:21 pm
By Rachel Marusak Hermann for Intellectual Property Watch
The greatest threat to global public health is not infectious diseases according to the World Health Organization. In a report released this week, the WHO found that noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) are the top cause of death worldwide. The report details the NCD situation in 193 countries and comes as world leaders prepare to meet at the United Nations high-level meeting on NCDs  in New York on 19-20 September.
In recent decades, health authorities have given greatest attention to infectious diseases, such as HIV/AIDS. The WHO said this report gives new urgency to improving the prevention and treatment of the most deadly NCDs: cancer, heart disease, stroke, lung disease, and diabetes. In 2008, these diseases killed more than 36 million people: cardiovascular diseases accounting for 48 percent of these deaths, cancers 21 percent, chronic respiratory diseases 12 percent, and diabetes 3 percent.
Beyond the health impact, the WHO also emphasizes the economic strain these diseases have, especially in low- and middle-income countries. WHO authorities are urging the international community to sharpen its focus on NCDs. Such attention could intensify concerns about access to treatment of these diseases in developing countries. And this could raise more questions about the role of intellectual property rights in relation to that access.
For the WHO’s full report on NCD’s, click here .
Article printed from Intellectual Property Watch: http://www.ip-watch.org
URL to article: http://www.ip-watch.org/2011/09/15/ncds-pose-major-threat-to-public-health-who-reports/
URLs in this post:
 United Nations high-level meeting on NCDs: http://www.un.org/en/ga/ncdmeeting2011/
 click here: http://www.who.int/gho/ncd/en/index.html
 World Health Assembly: Members Adopt Resolution On Preventing And Controlling NCDs: http://www.ip-watch.org/2012/05/25/world-health-assembly-members-agree-on-ncd-resolution/