Health of Nation 2021 report throws light on current trends of NCDs in India

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Marking the World Health Day, the Health of the Nation 2021 report by the Apollo Hospital Group has unveiled the trends of non-communicable diseases spreading in India during the past two decades. It has revealed that there is a steady rise in the spread of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) which has been the major cause of deaths in the country.

According to the report, NCDs have contributed to a staggering 64.9 per cent of total deaths in the country as compared to communicable diseases, while deaths due to maternal and other causes have dropped to 25 per cent during the past two decades.

The study provides a unique perspective drawn from Apollo Hospitals’ 37 years of experience and its vast footprint across the country and underlines how artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML) and big data analytics can help to predict risk and prevent NCDs. The report also cautioned that during the prevailing Covid-19 pandemic individuals with NCDs such as diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, chronic kidney disease, and chronic liver disease have a greater mortality risk.

While giving his comments on the prevailing pandemic and the situation before it, Dr Prathap C Reddy, chairman, Apollo Hospitals Group, observed that even before the pandemic began, there has been unacceptable loss of lives due to non-communicable diseases. In fact, the silent epidemic of NCDs before the pandemic had contributed to 40 per cent of hospital stays in the country.

“The data from our Health of the Nation report made it clear that we have let another epidemic slip, the epidemic of NCDs – the impact of which we are already beginning to see around us. We can overcome NCDs together as a country, only if each and every one of us takes our health seriously,” observed Dr. Reddy.

Dr Reddy further reiterated that the Apollo Group of hospitals in India is right from the beginning working on preventive health for over 37 years. “We have been constantly evolving our programs for early detection and better clinical outcomes using personalized heath management programmes like ProHealth,” he said.

The Health of the Nation report also reminded that the 2030 agenda for sustainable development adopted by the United Nations (UN) recognizes NCDs as a major challenge for sustainable development with the target to reduce premature mortality from NCDs by one-third by 2030 and observed that to mitigate the risk of deaths due to the pandemic, it is high time to utilize the advanced and innovative technology such as AI, ML and big data analytics.

Throwing light on how the Apollo Hospital Group is utilizing its experiences to develop unique AI and ML programmes though data analytics, Dr Sangita Reddy, Joint Managing Director, Apollo Hospitals Group said, “We are harnessing the power of technology to develop new methodologies for screening, detection, and patient risk profiling. We are using our pioneering experience of over 37 years and countrywide network to create and innovate new models of care to improve clinical outcomes. We have been the first to adopt artificial intelligence and Big Data analytics to predict risk and personalize care.”

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