Overview of Project
Myanmar is currently witnessing a period of great socio-economic transition, and nowhere is this change more evident than in the health of its population. The country faces the twin challenges of meeting the basic health needs of the people while tackling a range of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) that have become increasingly prevalent in the past decade. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), NCDs account for at least 59 per cent of deaths in Myanmar (WHO, 2014). Working adults over the age of 45, especially women, are most at risk of being diagnosed with NCDs.
The rising incidence of reduced fertility and increased longevity in Myanmar indicates that NCDs will be a significant feature of Myanmar’s health profile for years to come. Taking action on NCDs will result in children and adults of all ages living healthier and more productive lives. In the long run, lower mortality will ease the pressure on the public health system, and ensure access and affordability for all. Better health means a stronger society and economy for Myanmar.
The “Strengthening Public Health Capacity to Respond to Myanmar’s Disease Transition” project is being jointly implemented by HelpAge International, University of Public Health, Yangon, University of Medicine 2, Yangon and Thammasat University, Thailand. It is supported by European Union as part of its Supporting Public Health Institutes Programme under the Investing in People Initiative.
The key objective of this project is to strengthen the University of Public Health and wider health stakeholders to support evidence-based policy and improved health services, particularly in preparation for the transition towards non-communicable diseases in Myanmar. The project builds national evidence, knowledge and collaborations in order to help integrate NCDs and mental health into the mainstream of national health policy dialogue and service delivery, and also works for strengthening the institutional capacity.