Botswana launches 3rd non-communicable diseases risk factor survey

GABORONE, Feb. 28 (Xinhua) -- Botswana on Wednesday launched a survey to offer information about the current prevalence of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) and their risk factors in the country.

Botswanan Minister of Health Edwin Dikoloti told the media in Gaborone, the capital of Botswana, that the survey, the third of its kind, titled Non-Communicable Diseases Risk Factor Survey, would be done in partnership with the National AIDS and Health Promotion Agency, the World Health Organization, and Statistics Botswana.

The survey, which will run from March 8 to June 18, is a household-based event that will include face-to-face interviews to collect key information on behavioral risk factors as well as screening for depression, anxiety, blood pressure, waist circumference, weight, and height to assist the ministry in gathering comprehensive data that will inform policies, interventions, and resource allocation strategies.

Dikoloti highlighted the fact that NCDs are the largest cause of death globally, accounting for 41 million fatalities, or around 74 percent of all deaths. "On average, one person dies every two seconds prematurely, that is, before the age of 70, from NCDs around the world," said Dikoloti.

He noted that as a result of urbanization and the adoption of Western lifestyles, Botswana is seeing an increase in modifiable NCD risk factors such as tobacco use, poor diets, physical inactivity, and problematic alcohol consumption. In Botswana, NCDs account for about 46 percent of deaths.

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