AstraZeneca and NGO’s ‘Young Health Programme’ will protect Karnataka youth against diseases

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KEY STORY

  • The global initiative, ‘Young Health Programme’, of AstraZeneca, a science-led biopharmaceutical company, and Plan India, an NGO, was launched in Karnataka during a virtual event recently.
  • The decade-old programme which has successfully protected youngsters against non-communicable diseases (NCDs) in many countries and states like Delhi and Tamil Nadu will start in three areas of Bengaluru.
  • Speaking to The New Indian Express, AstraZeneca’s MD Gagandeep Singh, said, “We are very excited to sign an MoU for this initiative on World Cancer Day. Cancer is one of the most common NCDs so, it gives me great pride to announce this expansion to Bangalore as one of our first target regions in the state on this World Cancer Day.”
  • NCDs in India account for 62 per cent of all deaths and 48 percent of preventable premature deaths. It is suggested that more than 2/3rd of premature deaths can be traced back to NCD risk factors like tobacco use, physical inactivity, or poor diet, that were first established in adolescence.
  • YHP aims to reduce unhealthy behaviours in young people to improve their health outcomes as adults, and help address the growing burden of NCDs on health systems. In Bengaluru, communities from Yelahanka, Dasarahalli and Mahadevpura have been chosen. Under the initiative, youngsters in the age group of 10-24 will be chosen for the work.
  • Peer educators will be trained to deliver numerous health promotion activities including theme-based competition drawing, debates, quizzes, writing, sports, plays and storytelling etc.

CONCLUSION 

  • YHP will also establish ‘Health Information Centres’ as it aims to reach 50,000 adolescents in the first year and build a strong foundation to scale up the project in the years to come. Dr Ravi Kumar, senior regional director, ministry of health and family welfare, was also present at the virtual launch of this event.

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