WHO: Low-Cost Solutions to Chronic Diseases

Posted September 18th, 2011 at 9:55 pm (UTC-5)
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The World Health Organization says developing nations can prevent and treat millions of cases of cancer, diabetes, lung disease and heart disease for as little as $1.20 per person per year.

The United Nations agency says in a new report that non-communicable diseases are the world's top cause of death and that 80 percent of those deaths come in poorer countries. The report says the cost of treating such illnesses is the one of the leading threats to global economic growth and development.

But WHO says measures such as establishing smoke-free offices and public places, campaigns on cutting salt and fat from the diet, and raising taxes on cigarettes and alcohol are affordable steps governments can take to prevent millions of deaths.

The UN holds a high-level two-day meeting beginning Monday in New York on tackling non-communicable diseases.