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Am J Public Health. 2016 Jan;106(1):74-8. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2015.302962.

The World Health Organization STEPwise Approach to Noncommunicable Disease Risk-Factor Surveillance: Methods, Challenges, and Opportunities.

Author information

1
Leanne Riley, Regina Guthold, Melanie Cowan, Stefan Savin, Lubna Bhatti, and Timothy Armstrong are with Department for Prevention of Noncommunicable Diseases, World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland. Ruth Bonita is with University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

We sought to outline the framework and methods used by the World Health Organization (WHO) STEPwise approach to noncommunicable disease (NCD) surveillance (STEPS), describe the development and current status, and discuss strengths, limitations, and future directions of STEPS surveillance.

METHODS:

STEPS is a WHO-developed, standardized but flexible framework for countries to monitor the main NCD risk factors through questionnaire assessment and physical and biochemical measurements. It is coordinated by national authorities of the implementing country. The STEPS surveys are generally household-based and interviewer-administered, with scientifically selected samples of around 5000 participants.

RESULTS:

To date, 122 countries across all 6 WHO regions have completed data collection for STEPS or STEPS-aligned surveys.

CONCLUSIONS:

STEPS data are being used to inform NCD policies and track risk-factor trends. Future priorities include strengthening these linkages from data to action on NCDs at the country level, and continuing to develop STEPS' capacities to enable a regular and continuous cycle of risk-factor surveillance worldwide.

PMID:
26696288
PMCID:
PMC4695948
DOI:
10.2105/AJPH.2015.302962
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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