Nepal NCDI Poverty Commission promotes vision for expansion of equitable NCDI care

Author: Amy McLaughlin, NCD Synergies
May 14, 2018

On Monday, March 26th 2018, the Nepal NCDI Poverty Commission, the Nepal Ministry of Health and Population, and various collaborators gathered in Kathmandu, Nepal for the launch of the Commission’s 2018 report. Nepal is one of eleven countries who have been working with The Lancet Commission on Reframing NCDs and Injuries for the Poorest Billion (NCDI Poverty) to convene a National NCDI Poverty Commission to assess the local burden of NCDIs and baseline service availability to provide national priority-setting recommendations for equitable NCD strategies and interventions.

Over 80 people attended the launch of the Nepal NCDI Poverty Commission report to hear from Nepalese policymakers, researchers, and clinical implementers share key findings and national recommendations from the report.

Photo Credit / Nepal NCDI Poverty Commission
Nepal Commission Co-Chair Dr. Bhagawan Koirala and Dr. Pushpa Chaudhary, Secretary of the Nepal Ministry of Health and Population, officially launch the report in Kathmandu.

Proceedings were moderated by Commission co-chair Dr. Bhagawan Koirala and Nepal Commission Coordinator Dr. Biraj Karmacharya. Throughout the day, presentations highlighted Commission findings  evaluating national NCDI burden of disease and risk factor attribution and the impact NCDs have on financial hardship and impoverishment in Nepal, particularly among the poorest. The report also provided national recommendations for the prioritization of NCDI services from an equity-based lens, accounting for cost-effectiveness, priority to the worse off, and financial risk protection.

Photo Credit / Nepal NCDI Poverty Commission
Over 80 people attended the launch in Kathmandu, to watch the Nepal Commission launch the report. The Nepal Ministry of Health and Population, as well as many other key national stakeholders, were well represented.

In addition to presenting the key findings of the Commission, the launch featured presentations by:

  • Pushpa Chaudhary – Secretary, Nepal Ministry of Health and Population
  • Jos Vandelaer – Nepal Country Representative, WHO
  • Gene Bukhman – Co-chair, global Lancet NCDI Poverty Commission
  • Indrani Gupta – Commissioner, global Lancet NCDI Poverty Commission





The Nepal NCDI Poverty Commission was established in November 2016, and has been led by Co-Chairs Dr. Bhagawan Koirala from Tribhuvan University and Dr. Senendra Raj Upreti, Secretary at the Nepal Ministry of Health. The Commission is comprised of 24 multisectoral experts who have overseen and guided the Commission’s work, efforts which have been supported by two research assistants and three advisors.

Since the Commission’s first meeting, Commissioners have conducted an in-depth cost analysis and impact assessment on two exceptional innovations that Nepal has led to provide healthcare to the poorest. These programs include:

  • A national program that guarantees cardiac surgery, free of charge for all children with congenital and rheumatic heart disease; and
  • A countrywide initiative providing all patients below the poverty line with government subsidized medical support for nine major NCDs.

The full findings of these analyses, along with an extensive set of national recommendations for service prioritization can be found in the Nepal Commission Report. The Report and its Appendices are available for download here

In the coming months, the Nepal NCDI Poverty Commission will continue to disseminate its findings and extend its work into new areas of analysis. The group will also focus on implementation of the policy and service delivery recommendations laid out in the report in specific regions around the country.