Health Promotion Programs to Reduce Noncommunicable Diseases: A Call for Action in Kuwait

Healthcare (Basel). 2020 Aug 3;8(3):251. doi: 10.3390/healthcare8030251.


Most public health issues in Kuwait are related to unhealthy behaviours. Research shows that behaviours are the result not only exclusively of personal choices but also of myriads of other social and environmental factors. Kuwait is one of the leading countries in obesity and tobacco use in the world. Cardiovascular diseases stemming from complications related to these and other risk factors are important health issues based on their morbidity and mortality implications. These risks are spread across society and affect the old as well as young boys. The serious gaps between Kuwait's health-related needs and the existing policies to reduce public health risks in Kuwait create a significant obstacle to healthy behaviour change. Kuwait requires adequate laws, policies, regulations, activities, and programs to promote people's health. The Socio-Ecological Model (SEM) has been used successfully in health promotion in various behavioural settings, including obesity, physical inactivity, and smoking. We propose the use of SEM as a planning framework in building sustainable health promotion programs in Kuwait while paying attention to other concepts such as systems thinking, authentic community participation, community capacity, policy development, public health infrastructure enhancement, health coaching, and equity.

Keywords: Kuwait; health promotion; obesity; physical inactivity; public health; smoking; socioecological model.