Pacific losing battle against NCDs

The Pacific Community (SPC) says a new approach is needed to try and rein in the region's non-communicable disease (NCD) crisis.

Seventy five percent of all deaths in the Pacific are NCD-related and this has even been linked to the decline in life expectancy in some countries.

According to RNZI, the Director General of the SPC said countries are not doing enough to combat the epidemic.

Colin Tukuitonga said he hopes a summit in Tonga next month will strengthen the response to non-communicable diseases.

"In many small islands at least half the population have diabetes or pre-diabetes, obesity rates remain high. Smoking rates continue to be climbing and so we are not making the kind of impact that we need to make."