CSA together with Plan Kenya, AMURT and Public Health Institute conducted a study between October 2016 and March 2017 on non-communicable diseases among Kenyan youth. The legislative and policy landscape study aimed at identifying the broad NCDs related issues evident in Kenya. The study looked at practices and lifestyle issues attributed to the deteriorating health of young people.
Over the recent years Non-Communicable Diseases among young people have become a health concern worldwide. Almost three quarters of NCD related deaths occur in low- and middle-income countries each year according to the World Health Organization. Kenya is experiencing a convergence of NCDs and infectious diseases among the young people aged 10-24 years.
“The main risk factors for NCDs in Kenya are exposure to tobacco use, physical inactivity, unhealthy diets and harmful use of alcohol” says Milton Bwibo who is the research officer at CSA.
The study shows that tobacco use is more common among young Kenyan men than women, with 5.0 % percent of young men aged 15-24 years smoking cigarettes compared to less than 1% young women.
The new study concludes that Kenya is facing an increasing NCD burden amongst its youthful and general populations. Existing policies and legal instruments have not been effectively coordinated to respond to the NCD burden despite the existence of global and national instruments to guide NCD programming.
One of the recommendations put forward from the study report is that the national government should strengthen the coordination and implementation of existing health policies and strategies aimed at reversing the NCD- tide in Kenya. CSA will disseminate this study report at both national and county level where it has called health officers from the national and county Ministries of Health and key stakeholders working to implement NCD programs.
CSA has also released two policy briefs which seek to influence policy review and development around NCDs. The two policy briefs include:
- Addressing Gaps in the Health Policy 2014-2030 to halt and reverse the rising burden of NCDs in Kenya
- Protecting Kenyan Youth from NCDs will accelerate realization of Vision 2030