The Health of Africans: Broader Determinants of Diseases and Synergies

Africa’s prosperity is inextricably linked to the health of its people and there is ample evidence of how major diseases such as malaria, TB, and HIV/AIDS have affected the continent’s economic progress. With rapid urbanization and economic growth, non-communicable diseases (NCDs) such as hypertension, diabetes, and strokes are on the rise as Africans adopt sedentary lifestyles and increase fats, salt, and sugars in their diets. Furthermore, the continent is facing re-emergence of neglected diseases such as Ebola. Progress in preventing or eliminating major diseases has been slow, in part because of vertical programmes and lack of understanding of the broader socio-economic influences on health. With growth of NCDs, health systems will need to adapt to accommodate prevention and curing a whole range of infectious diseases and non-communicable diseases.
Sessions are invited on the better understanding of the synergistic burdens of these major diseases, innovative public health policies, and social and community interventions. Sessions should pay attention to gender dimensions. Sessions may address the following topics:
a) Geographical patterns of major health challenges in Africa
b) Synergistic approaches to tackling diseases, highlighting challenges and gains
c) Innovative public health policies and health systems
d) Social or community interventions.

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