The Status of Non-Communicable Disease Prevention and Control in the Philippines: A Systematic Review

Paul Adrian V. Pinlac,1 Eleanor C. Castillo,2 Jonathan P. Guevarra,2 Ivanhoe C. Escartin,3 Ma. Elizabeth I. Caluag,4 Carmela N. Granada,4 Luz B. Tagunicar,5 Aurora D. Banda,3 John Juliard L. Go,6 Jae Kyoun Kim,6 Christopher Allu S. Sy,7 Arvin A. Maceda7 and Nina G. Gloriani8

1 Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, College of Public Health,
University of the Philippines Manila
2 Department of Health Promotion and Education, College of Public Health,
University of the Philippines Manila
3 Health Promotion and Communication Service, Department of Health
4 Lifestyle-Related Diseases Division, Disease Prevention and
Control Bureau, Department of Health
5 Media and External Relations Division, Health Promotion and
Communication Service, Department of Health
6 World Health Organization - Philippines
7 College of Public Health, University of the Philippines Manila
8 Department of Medical Microbiology, College of Public Health,
University of the Philippines Manila

Objective. This paper aims to provide concise background information regarding the state of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) and their risk factors as well as the existing efforts to address them in the Philippines in the last 25 years.

Methods. A desk review of documents and literature review as well as analyses of available statistical data and several consultations with involved government agencies have been made to come up with summary figures and tables.

Results. NCDs as well as metabolic conditions that can potentially lead to NCDs are on the rise in the last score of years. The Philippines, through the Department of Health, has been visionary in leading various projects and activities to fight NCDs over the last two decades, and its efforts are slowly paying off: the prevalence of tobacco use and that of hypertension have decreased over the last 5 years. NCD mortality (including premature deaths) and prevalence of behavioral risk factors, however, generally remain high, and the Philippines needs to accelerate whole-of-society and whole-of-government actions to sustain the gains and attain its NCD targets in the next 10 years or so.

Conclusion. The need to strengthen health system inverventions and promote accountability of various sectors in addressing NCDs and its risk factors in the country arises. The development of a multisectoral action plan on NCD prevention and control is needed to halt the rise of NCDs in the country.

Key Words: noncommunicable disease, risk factors, prevention and control