7 out of 10 killer diseases pre-COVID were non-communicable diseases: WHO

WION Web Team
New Delhi, India Published: Dec 09, 2020, 09:10 PM(IST)

World Health Organization's (WHO) logo (file photo) Photograph:( Reuters )

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Out of the 10 causes of deaths before COVID-19 that hit the world, seven were non-communicable diseases (NCDs)

Out of the 10 causes of deaths before COVID-19 that hit the world, seven were non-communicable diseases (NCDs), the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Wednesday. The health body added how heart disease was killing more people than ever before.

According to the WHO’s latest Global Health Estimates, which traced statistics between 2000-2019 found that even though people now were living for longer than earlier, it did not necessarily translate into good health.

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The study took into account trends over the last two decades, including mortality and morbidity. It found that NCDs made just four out top 10 causes of death in 2000. But last year itself, the number has risen to seven. 

COVID-19 set toe debut in the list - coming up in the top 10 after passing the 1.5 million mark on December 3.

2019 had witnessed 55.4 million deaths worldwide. The ten top causes of death were also responsible of 55 per cent fatalities, hailing from three categories - cardiovascular, respiratory, and neonatal.

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The top fives cases of death in order are - heart disease, strokes, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, lower respiratory infections, and neonatal conditions.

These were closely followed by trachea, bronchus and lung cases, Alzheimers’ disease, other dementias, diarrhoea, diabetes, and kidney ailments.

The WHO, in a statement claimed that the figures "clearly highlight the need for an intensified global focus on preventing and treating cardiovascular diseases, cancer, diabetes and chronic respiratory diseases, as well as tackling injuries”.

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For the last 20 years, heart disease has been at the helm of killing people. "However, it is now killing more people than ever before," the WHO said. In 2019, heart disease killed nine million people, up by 2 million since 2000.

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