Noncommunicable Diseases

Noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) are the leading causes of death and disease burden worldwide. The four main types of NCDs—cardiovascular disease, cancer, chronic lung disease, and diabetes—result in more than 30 million deaths annually. NCDs are related to the interaction of various genetic, environmental and especially lifestyle factors, including smoking, alcohol abuse, unhealthy diets and physical inactivity. 

URC programs address NCDs through a combination of research and evaluation, health systems strengthening, quality improvement, including:

  • Health system strengthening in low- and middle-income countries and in the US
  • Applying quality improvement methods to translate best practices into service delivery in low-resource communities and health centers
  • Technical expertise in high-impact NCD prevention, early detection, and treatment services, including rational packaging of services across the health system
  • Training and education for healthcare workers and alcohol and substance abuse service providers
  • Use of SBCC to educate communities and healthcare workers and effect positive changes in health behaviors
  • Integrating NCD interventions into established services addressing reproductive health, maternal, newborn and child health, HIV, tuberculosis, and other programs
  • Strengthening health information systems and use of data for evidence-based decision making and continuous quality improvement at local, regional, and national levels
  • Addressing gender issues in NCD services, including differences in gender-related risk factors, differences in access to care and care-seeking behaviors among men and women, and different treatment by providers.

Regions and Countries