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NCDs and mental health among top global health issues to track in 2021

04th January 2021

In 2020, the world saw one of the biggest global health crisis. 

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to expose the existing link between noncommunicable diseases (NCDs), communicable diseases and health emergencies, and the need to stop addressing health issues in siloes. The World Health Organization (WHO) has announced that preventing and treating NCDs and mental health conditions must be given priority in 2021. NCDs now account for 7 of the top 10 causes of death. Last year, we saw the devasting impact of COVID-19 on people living with NCDs from high risk and mortality to disruption in essential healthcare services. 

WHO’s latest Global Health Estimates showed that NCDs now account for 7 of the top 10 causes of death.

Last year, evidence from science, healthcare professionals, and government guidelines on self-isolation from the COVID-19 pandemic showed many intersections between COVID-19 and NCDs. People who are over 60 years of age and people living with noncommunicable diseases (PLWNCDs) and conditions including hypertension and obesity, have a substantially higher risk of becoming severely ill or dying from the virus. 

Evidence also showed how COVID-19 is disrupting the provision of essential public health functions and necessary health services for people living with NCDs. 

Find out what other global health issues will take centre stage in 2021.