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||Each year, Suriname loses 170 000 productive life-years due to ill-health and premature death. Poor health and health inequities cause personal suffering and missed opportunities for social and economic development. “Communicable diseases, maternal, neonatal, and nutritional disorders”, “Non-communicable diseases” and “Injuries” account for 27%, 58%, and 15% respectively. Benchmarking against 15 comparator countries at similar level of economic development shows that it does not have to be so. There is considerable room to improve compared with the “best-in-class”.
Public policies that address the main risk factors for the burden of disease, the social determinants of health inequities and that allow and encourage participation by citizens, non-government and other private organizations and firms are the most effective way of reducing the burden of disease. Reducing the burden of disease and health inequities will facilitate social and economic growth in Suriname.
Suriname’s burden of disease was analysed at the HiAP National Consensus Workshop in August 2015 to identify its causes and promising policy action areas. Improving the situation in a manner that is both cost-effective and sustainable requires dealing with its causes rather than waiting for people needing expensive hospital care.
Technical experts and senior staff from 17 government ministries have worked together to formulate 12 intersectoral policies addressing the main risk factors for the burden of disease (i.e., unhealthy diet, physical inactivity, smoking, harmful alcohol use, domestic violence, etc.) and the social determinants of the health inequities (e.g., clustering of disadvantage, lack of access to social and health services, lack of social capital, social and cultural norms and gender roles, etc.
The implementation of the policies will require no or little extra money. On the contrary, the policies will have a double-positive effect by reducing the pressure for an ever-increasing health care budget by promoting preventive measures in all sectors, while at the same time powering social and economic productivity – a true win-win situation.
All of the 12 policies are intersectoral, i.e., they require concerted action by different sectors. For each of the policies a policy leader and a king-pin policy are identified. The roles of these are to guide and enable the key public sector players to adopt their specific sectoral policies, commit to deliver and be accountable for results. There are close links between the 12 policies and the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) (see table 2).
The Council of Ministers will, after adopting the proposed policies review their implementation every six months. It is envisaged that a National Health Forum and a Population Health Report in November 2017 will document and discuss achievements and lessons learnt to further advance health and development in Suriname.
The areas are:
1. Education for health participation
2. Healthy workplaces
3. Space for health
4. Zonal planning for health
5. Clean and healthy ressorts
6. Health equity for the upcoming generation
7. Local solutions to local health challenges
8. Food-labelling for health
9. Healthy fresh local food for local stomachs
10. Educating professionals for health equity
11. Investing for population health
12. Re-engineering the health system for effectiveness and equity
|1.1 Socio- economic Sector (OECD)
||420 Women in development (WID)
43040 Rural Development