Govt committed to combat non-communicable diseases:Kiani

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ISLAMABAD, Mar 24 (APP):Minister for National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination Aamer Mehmood Kiani on Sunday said the government was committed to combat non-communicable diseases (NCDs) to reduce the burden of these diseases.
Addressing the participants of a hiking activity at Trail-3 of Margallah hills, Kiani said NCDs were now turning out to be a major point of concern all over the world and in Pakistan as a significant number of deaths occur due to non-communicable diseases like cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, cancer etc..
He said keeping in view the situation, the ministry of national health services had initiated an awareness drive. He added a cycling event ‘pedal for health’ was also part of the campaign.
The minister said physical activities like running, hiking, cycling could significantly reduce the chances of acquiring non- communicable diseases.
He said one of the important risk factors that were contributing in development of non communicable diseases was lack of physical activity. 
He said according to World Health Organization (WHO) physical inactivity or lack of physical activity had been identified as the third leading risk factor for global mortality as six percent deaths globally attributed to that factor.
He said physical inactivity was estimated to be the main cause for 27% of diabetes and approximately 30% of ischaemic heart disease burden.
The minister said the government had been working to make federal capital a model health city and there was a plan to work on health tourism with provision of modern health technology to the hospital.
He said the ministry had decided to upgrade all rural health center (RHCs) and basic health units (BHUs) in Islamabad Capital Territory with addition of more facilities to ensure provision of the best medical cover to citizens.
He said the government had started up-gradation of all health facilities in ICT while dispensaries were also being upgraded to ensure provision of standard medical services to the people of federal capital.
The minister said each Union Council of Islamabad would have at least one public health facility. For this two more RHCs and nine BHUs will be built in coming years in the rural areas of Islamabad.
He said the government had paid special attention to the critical issue and strengthened national program to provide free treatment to TB patients.
Kiani said more than 300,000 TB patients were benefiting from free diagnostic and treatment facility every year in Pakistan.
He said more than 30 hospitals had been upgraded to take care of multi-drug resistance TB cases and 13 labs equipped with state of the art facilities are being established in various part of the country.
He said in order to control the infectious disease, the ministry had established a center at Sector G-7/3, Islamabad. It will be a model center dedicated for the screening, testing and treatment of TB and Hepatitis-C.
He said the teams would visit door to door in rural areas of federal capital to screen high risk individuals. He added all the testing facilities and treatment would be free of cost.