National Strategy for the Prevention of Non-communicable Diseases (NCD strategy)

In Switzerland 2.2 million people suffer from noncommunicable diseases such as cancer.

The emergence of non-communicable diseases is linked to various factors. In addition to genetic predisposition, lifestyle has an influence: a healthy lifestyle limits these diseases and their consequences. However, no one is immune to them.


Why an NCD strategy?

Today, people in our society live twice as long as they did a hundred years ago. We owe this longer life expectancy to medical, economic and social progress, better hygiene and education, the expansion of social insurance, etc. As a result, our quality of life has improved and our lifestyle and working conditions have changed. As a result, our quality of life has improved and our lifestyle and working conditions have changed. The other side of the coin: non-communicable diseases (NCDs) are on the rise. Today, a quarter of the Swiss population suffers from NCDs such as

  • Diabetes
  • cancer
  • cardiovascular diseases
  • Chronic respiratory diseases
  • musculoskeletal diseases (diseases of the musculoskeletal system, e.g. chronic back pain)

NCDs not only cause great personal suffering. They also represent a major challenge for our healthcare system. Due to the usually long phases of illness, treatments for NCDs take a long time and require intensive care. The five diseases mentioned above are the most common causes of death in the Swiss population. These five NCDs are responsible for 40 per cent of healthcare costs. All NCDs together account for more than CHF 50 billion of healthcare costs, or around 80 per cent.

Demographic trends will exacerbate this problem. We want to break this trend with our NCD strategy.

Who is behind the strategy?

The "National Strategy for the Prevention of Non-Communicable Diseases" was commissioned by the Federal Council and the National Health Policy Dialogue, the joint federal and cantonal platform for health policy issues. On their behalf, we developed implementation measures together with the Swiss Conference of Cantonal Ministers of Public Health (GDK) and the Swiss Health Promotion Foundation (GFCH).


"More people stay healthy or have a high quality of life despite chronic illness. Fewer people fall ill with preventable, non-communicable diseases or die prematurely. People are empowered to maintain a healthy lifestyle in a health-promoting environment, regardless of their socio-economic status."

The Federal Council has declared the NCD strategy to be one of the priorities of its Health2030 agenda.

Last modification 06.05.2024

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Federal Office of Public Health FOPH
Prevention Non-communicable diseases Division
Schwarzenburgstrasse 157
3003 Bern
Tel. +41 58 463 88 24

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