Audio, Magazines

The heavy burden of poor health

Non-communicable diseases, obesity and the covid-19 impetus for building better health systems

Most read this month

The hidden health crisis

Obesity casts a big shadow

Contagion of a social kind

We face a fundamental change of the cost structure on the supply side and a need for a fundamental change.

Jochen Kreusel

- Market innovation manager in the power grids division at ABB Power

They [the European Commission] are looking at this stuff backwards. I still think they are convinced the short-term market model could work even though they are also starting to realise that you need something parallel, with long term price signals that give investors confidence to invest in infrastructure and allow them to see a decent market return.

Francesco Venturini

- Global head of renewables for Italian utility Enel

Despite tremendous cost decline of wind and solar technologies, electricity prices will probably remain too low to attract the level of investment needed.

Fatih Birol

- Executive director of the International Energy Agency

The greatest barrier to overcome is the integration of variable renewables into electricity systems. This will require developing power system flexibility and also a friendly deployment of variable renewables.

Fatih Birol

- Executive director of the International Energy Agency

Pandemic builds potential for better global health

The novel coronavirus pandemic has exposed the fault lines in both global and national health infrastructures, highlighting inequalities and structural flaws. There has never been a timelier moment to focus on how to improve the resilience of health systems

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The hidden health crisis

A decade of initiatives to combat non-communicable diseases have failed to curb their growth. Policymakers need a more comprehensive approach that recognises the complexity of these health failures and takes lessons from successful infectious disease campaigns

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Obesity casts a big shadow

Rates of obesity are skyrocketing, and more comprehensive policies are needed to fully address the complex causes of the condition

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A ruinous epidemic

The obesity crisis has been a long time in the making, gathering force despite more than a decade of individual initiatives to reduce the numbers of seriously overweight people. Comprehensive policymaking that touches on the complex roots of obesity has huge potential to reverse the progress of a deadly epidemic linked to growth in economic prosperity

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Disease in disguise

As obesity reaches epidemic levels globally, experts are reflecting on the mixed results of policies implemented over the past decade and asking if obesity should be treated as a disease more than as a lifestyle choice that individuals can modify

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NCDs in numbers

Key figures on the prevalence and funding of non-communicable diseases

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Double burden on the poor

Populations in more than one in three low-income countries are hit by a double burden of malnutrition in the form of both obesity and undernutrition. Effective nutrition programmes can help countries overcome the double malnutrition challenge

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Imagine a world of good health

Policies to curb NCDs need to consider broader environment for good health

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Audio, Outlook

Contagion of a social kind

Non-communicable diseases and their risk factors seem to be common among certain groups of friends and families. Genetic reasons aside, the concepts of social contagion, shared spaces and a tendency for similar people to associate (known as homophily), might explain why these diseases appear to be more infectious than their name suggests

Coronavirus could spur reforms to improve health of city dwellers

The promise and challenge of health tech

Opinion: Digital health care can bring fairer access for all

What our editors are reading

Excess Weight & COVID-19 by Public Health England

Reports

This report provides evidence-based insights on the relationship between excess weight and COVID-19. Evidence has been brought together from UK and international studies published during the pandemic. These have been identified using a pragmatic methodology; the report is not a systematic review. Findings have been contextualised with information on the prevalence, causes, and risks of excess weight. Information on food and drink purchases and physical activity during lockdown is also included.

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Bridging the Gap on NCDs by NCD Alliance

Reports

Since the first United Nations High-Level Meeting (UN HLM) on NCDs in 2011, the NCD community has been able to point to many successes on the global stage: Noncommunicable Diseases (NCDs) are recognised as the world’s biggest killer and cause of disability, constituting a global health crisis that requires an urgent policy response. This was acknowledged by world leaders at three UN HLMs on NCDs, meriting a dedicated target in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for 2030.

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NCDs Progress Monitor 2020 by WHO

Reports

The 2020 Progress Monitor provides data on the 19 indicators detailed in the Technical Note for all of WHO’s 194 Member States. The indicators include setting time-bound targets to reduce NCD deaths; developing all-of-government policies to address NCDs; implementing key tobacco demand reduction measures, measures to reduce harmful use of alcohol and unhealthy diets and promote physical activity; and strengthening health systems through primary health care and universal health coverage.

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