IraPEN to Be Implemented Nationwide

IraPEN to Be Implemented NationwideIraPEN to Be Implemented Nationwide

The national scheme to control non-communicable diseases, known as IraPEN, will soon be implemented nationwide through universities of medical sciences across the country, said a top official at the Health Ministry’s Committee for Prevention and Control of NCDs.

The scheme has been piloted in several provinces and the results are promising.

Baqer Larijani, vice president of the committee, said that the pilot projects in Zanjan, Fars, Mazandaran and Alborz provinces have made progress and experience from those regions will be used to expand the plan across the country.  

“It is essential to make a detailed evaluation of the pilot plans to pave the way for IraPEN’s national implementation by addressing challenges and setting priorities,” he said, IRNA reported.

IraPEN is Iran’s adaptation of the World Health Organization’s Package of Essential (PEN) NCD interventions for primary health care, focusing on cancer, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease, heart disease and stroke.

It is part of the national Health Reform Plan, launched in 2014 by the Health Ministry, to provide universal health coverage, including access to NCD prevention and care, and mental health services.

Risk factors for NCDs, primarily cardiovascular and lung diseases, cancer and diabetes, among populations of 30- to 70-year-olds receive attention in the program.

NCD committees at medical universities will be in charge of carrying out the plan. The official called on all departments in the Health Ministry to contribute by providing services to the identified high-risk populations.

NCDs account for over three-quarters of all deaths in Iran. In the past 20 years, NCD deaths have risen by 14.5%. An adult Iranian’s probability of dying prematurely (between 30 and 70 years) from one of the four main NCDs is now 17%.

PEN is a conceptual framework for strengthening equity and efficiency of primary health care in low-resource settings.

It identifies core technologies, medicines and risk prediction tools, discusses protocols required for implementation of a set of essential NCD interventions, develops technical and operational outlines for integration of essential NCD interventions into primary care and for evaluation of impact.


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