On September 5–6, Oxana Rotar, Chief Researcher at the Research Laboratory of NCDs Epidemiology, Russian WHO expert, took part in the WHO European regional consultation on noncommunicable diseases in emergency preparedness and response.
The online event brought together prominent experts and decision-makers from across the European Region to discuss how governments and health systems can prepare for future humanitarian crises, the challenges of managing NCDs during the COVID-19 pandemic, and how WHO can support countries to integrate NCD prevention and management in emergency strategies.
Data shows a substantial rise in NCD cases and related deaths during humanitarian crises. For instance, heart attacks and strokes increase up to 2–3 times immediately after disasters. Emergencies increase trauma and injuries, further degrading the health of people living with respiratory diseases, cancer, diabetes and severe renal conditions.
This happens due to disruptions in access to medicines and health-care services, and major interruption to normal living conditions.
Large-scale disasters and epidemics make preparedness, response and resilience work for those with and at risk of NCDs even more critical.
To discuss all of these issues, WHO/Europe organizes regular meetings to address these risks across the WHO European Region, and to advocate for the inclusion of NCD prevention and management in country preparedness and emergency response plans. Specialists of Almazov Centre take part in these meetings as experts of the WHO Collaborating Centre for CVDs, eHealth and value-based medicine.