European Commission

EU Non-Communicable Diseases Initiative

Around two thirds of all deaths in the European region currently result from non-communicable diseases (NCDs), such as diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and chronic respiratory conditions. Significant inequalities in life expectancy and mortality rates exist both between different EU countries and socioeconomic groups within a country. In order to combat NCDs, the EU has launched an initiative to support member states in developing and implementing effective policies focused on health promotion and disease prevention. The European Commission refers to prevention as one of the most underinvested areas in public health EU-wide so far. As mentioned in the initiative’s guidance document “Healthier Together”, SHARE forms part of the European information network in the study of health policies. The survey’s results contribute to the scientific background for the EU's initiative against NCDs.