Noncommunicable Diseases

A community health volunteer visits with a patient in Makueni

Private-Sector Engagement for Noncommunicable Diseases

In Kenya, more than half a million adults were living with diabetes in 2019, and an estimated 55% of deaths in the country are associated with a noncommunicable disease. MSH collaborated with the Kenyan Ministry of Health, Novartis Global Health & Corporate Responsibility, and Medtronic Labs to create Afya Dumu (“lasting health” in Swahili). The project trains health care workers and community health volunteers in Makueni, Nyeri, and Kakamega counties to improve diagnosis and care for Kenyans living with a noncommunicable disease, including case reporting and treatment referrals. The team is also rolling out Empower Health, a digital health app for mobile devices that includes an automated blood pressure monitor and glucometer. Providers will be able to view patients’ longitudinal data and provide direct patient feedback on their condition via short message service.

Facing the Challenge of Noncommunicable Diseases

Noncommunicable diseases, such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and cancer, are on the rise in low- and middle-income countries, where access to prevention, early detection, and treatment services is already limited. Noncommunicable diseases place long-term burdens on individuals, families, communities, and nations. We facilitate integrated screening and treatment and work to ensure access to safe and affordable medicines by finding the most effective ways of introducing pharmaceutical initiatives and health technologies for chronic care. We collaborate with payers, insurers, providers, and manufacturers to develop guidelines and contracts to increase affordable and sustainable access to medicines for these diseases.