MANA dashboard presentation at Pacifc Heads of Health Meeting 2018
The Pacific region is often referred to as ‘the Non Communicable Diseases (NCD) capital of the world’. The Pacific Island countries and Territories (PICTs) leaders have declared NCD to be a crisis and committed to take action on the Pacific NCD Roadmap, which specified policy and legislation measures aimed at preventing NCD.
However, there was no accountability mechanism to monitor and report on the progress against the implementation of the Roadmap. In order to address this, Pacific MANA was formed and the development of mutual accountability mechanism was initiated in the past few years. MANA has become a well-established Alliance and made significant progress in 2018.
Endorsed by the Pacific Health Ministers in 2017, the MANA Dashboard comprises of 31 indicators across the areas of leadership and governance, preventing policies (tobacco, alcohol, food, physical activity), health system response and monitoring processes, and uses a ‘traffic light rating scheme to track progress. The MANA Coordination Team collaborated with national NCD focal points and completed Dashboards for all 21 PICTs in an agreed completion and validation process in 2018. The findings were reported at Pacific Heads of Health Meeting in 2018 and Pacific Leaders are committed to take urgent action to address policy and legislation gaps in their respective PICTs.
The success of MANA work was through collaborative efforts of PICTs and partner agencies including Pacific Community (SPC), World Health Organization (WHO), Pacific Research Centre for the Prevention of Obesity and NCD (CPOND) and the Pacific Islands Health Officers’ Association (PIHOA); by establishing Pacific MANA Coordination Team, developing MANA Dashboard indicators, and completing and facilitating for endorsement at the Heads of Health meeting.
SPC chaired MANA coordination team and led in completing MANA Dashboards for nine PICTs (Dashboards for remaining PICTs were completed by other partner agencies). These include New Caledonia, French Polynesia, Wallis and Futuna, Nauru, Tonga, Niue, Solomon Islands, Kiribati and Papua New Guinea. SPC also led in collating all 21 endorsed Dashboards and producing a consolidated MANA regional report, and presenting key findings at key regional and national NCD events to take action to strengthen policies and legislation that address NCD.
The completion of the Dashboards between 2017 to 2018, was reported to be an informative exercise at national level with both the process and the completed dashboard highlighting the current strengths and where more action was needed. For example, key policy gaps were identified particularly in preventing tobacco industry interference, restricting alcohol advertising, reducing trans-fats in the food supply and limiting marketing of unhealthy food to children. The establishment and implementation of this accountability mechanism has demonstrated the commitments of Pacific leaders in addressing the NCD crisis.
Since the submission of the baseline findings at the Pacific Heads of Health in 2018, several positive outcomes have been observed. For example – PICTs have been using MANA Dashboards in 1) identifying current strengths and guiding the national identification of priority areas for action, 2) advocating policy makers, government ministers and key stakeholders to engage in NCD policy action, and 3) using as a mutual accountability mechanism to monitor and report PICTs progress on implementation of the Pacific NCD Roadmap. Additionally, a MANA Dashboard regional report which consolidated all country baseline findings was presented at the 2019 Pacific Heads of Health meeting and endorsed. This report has been shared at various fora including regional NCD meetings as well as the SPC CRGA meeting in June and at the upcoming Pacific Health Ministers meeting in August 2019.
Going forward, SPC continues to lead the MANA coordination team in partnership with regional agencies, to update the PICTs’ MANA Dashboards for 2019 and progress work around various country priority areas. SPC will collate the regional progress report which will be presented at the next Pacific Heads of Health Meeting in early 2020. In addition to working with countries, there is also work underway on the Pacific Data Hub where countries can access these information from.
This activity contributes to SPC’s development objective 7: improved multi-sectoral response to NCD by establishing accountability mechanism to monitor NCD action and to PICT’s development objectives in addressing NCD. This will contribute to ensuring Pacific people reach their potential and live long and health live and achieving Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) goal 3.4 - reduce by one third premature mortality from NCD by 2030, and Healthy Island Vision.