Promotion of standard treatment guidelines and building referral system for management of common noncommunicable diseases in India

Indian J Community Med. 2011 Dec;36(Suppl 1):S38-42. doi: 10.4103/0970-0218.94707.


Treatment services constitute one of the five priority actions to face the global crisis due to noncommunicable diseases (NCDs). It is important to formulate standard treatment guidelines (STGs) for an effective management, particularly at the primary and secondary levels of health care. Dissemination and implementation of STGs for NCDs on a country-wide scale involves difficult and complex issues. The management of NCDs and the associated costs are highly variable and huge. Besides the educational strategies for promotion of STGs, the scientific and administrative sanctions and sanctity are important for purposes of reimbursements, insurance, availability of facilities, and legal protection. An effective and functional referral- system needs to be built to ensure availability of appropriate care at all levels of health- services. The patient-friendly "to and fro" referral system will help to distribute the burden, lower the costs, and maintain the sustainability of services.

Keywords: Chronic respiratory disease; evidence-based guidelines; noncommunicable diseases; primary care; referral system; standard treatment guidelines.