Surveillance and Monitoring for Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) in South East Asian Region

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Need for Surveillance System

  For formulating policies, planning appropriate interventions and services, and monitoring progress towards desired goals - a sustainable surveillance system is essential, which provides accurate information.

Three Essential Elements for Non-Communicable Disease (NCD) Surveillance

  Surveillance for exposure to behavioural and metabolic risk factors.

  Surveillance for disease outcomes (morbidity and mortality)

  Surveillance/monitoring of health system response.

Risk Factor Surveillance

  All most in all member countries (SEAR region) at least one NCD risk factor survey has been completed.

  National level surveys were done in six countries; in India it is an ongoing process.

  Only in Indonesia and Thailand the risk factor questions integrated into the general health survey, but in other countries vertical or special surveys are carried out.

  Most frequent survey among risk factors is tobacco use, which is conducted at least one round of Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS).

  At least one round or more than one round of Global Youth Tobacco Survey (GYTS) completed in 10 countries.

  To collect information on risk behaviours such as tobacco and alcohol use, physical inactivity and unhealthy diet, physiological variables and biochemical variables, WHOSTEPS conducting various surveys.

Survey Variable

Number of Countries

Behavioral variables


Physiological risk factors


Blood sugar


  Since most of the member countries have completed only one round of STEPS survey, there is no sufficient information for trends estimation for diseases and risk factors.

Type of risk surveys conducted and the latest year, countries of WHO/SEA Region

  For planning and implementing risk factor surveys, the health ministry is the lead agency in most of the member countries.

  Risk factor surveys are mainly limited by non-institutionalized and ad hoc basis methods.

Source: WHO-2011 report
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