No more disease silos | BMJ | Volume 345, p. e5812
“Rather than concentrating on a few specific diseases, African governments and the international community should prioritize building health systems that offer universal financial protection against the cost of ill health along with improved access to, and the use of, quality services that meet the multiple health needs of the population.”
Countries in sub-Saharan Africa are facing a double burden of communicable and noncommunicable disease. In this article, Patricio Marquez and Jill Farrington argue that knowledge of their common determinants and the links between the diseases should be used to spur development of coordinated programs to prevent and treat both communicable diseases and NCDs.
In this analysis, the authors discuss the question: How should sub-Saharan Africa gear up to the challenge of NCDs in a way that avoids creating new vertical programs in competition for scarce resources? Recommendations include capitalizing on the links between conditions, focusing on common care needs rather than disease categories, and capitalizing on existing resources and capabilities.