Reducing the Burden of Non-Communicable Diseases in Moldova

Project completed

In Moldova, a quarter of the population dies of a Non-Communicable Disease (NCD), such as cardio-vascular disease, before reaching the age of 70. The quality of life of people affected by NCDs is very low, as the health system lacks the capacities to tackle NCDs effectively. The project strengthens primary healthcare service providers’ capacities to better organize care together with social services. Better health will be promoted through engaging communities and local authorities in common actions for NCD prevention and promotion of healthy behaviors.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Non-communicable diseases
01.01.2015 - 30.09.2020
CHF  4’530’000

Moldova is facing a rising burden of NCDs, for which its health system is not sufficiently prepared to cope with. NCDs affect more than half of Moldova’s population, causing very high morbidity and premature mortality rates, which undermine the social and economic development of the country. The probability of dying between the ages 30 and 70 from one of the four main NCDs (cardio-vascular diseases, diabetes, cancer and pulmonary diseases) is 26%. The prevalence of key lifestyle risk factors (tobacco consumption, harmful consumption of alcohol, unhealthy diet and physical inactivity) for NCDs is among the highest in Europe.

The Moldovan health system is still characterized by an oversized hospital infrastructure and a focus on specialized services, which makes it inefficient and unsuitable to respond to the challenges posed by the burden of NCDs. Policies and implemented measures in the past decade to tackle this burden have been disease-oriented, prioritizing treatment over prevention. The healthcare system is not adequately set up and prepared to effectively and efficiently manage patients with NCDs. At the same time, the population lacks knowledge and capacities to deal with the burden of NCDs. Health care-seeking behaviors is still characterized by a preference for expensive hospital and specialized care and a low sense of responsibility for one’s own health.


The health status of the Moldovan population with regard to non-communicable diseases has improved.

Target groups

Representatives of central and local public health authorities, public health specialists and primary health care professionals, social assistance workers and community leaders.

Final project beneficiaries are people at risk of developing or affected by NCDs. A special focus is given to the right to health of the poor and members of vulnerable groups (marginalized ethnic minorities, elderly, and people with disabilities).

Medium-term outcomes
  • National health authorities create an enabling policy environment for decentralized and integrated management of NCDs.
  • The population in target districts has access to and uses quality integrated care, including outreach services, related to NCDs.
  • The population in target districts has improved its healthcare-seeking behavior and reduced its NCDs risk behavior.

Results from previous phases:  

In the inception phase, many actors and activities in the field of NCDs, community health and primary health care were identified, both at national as well as at district and community level. This contributed to create an enabling environment to implement the project and to ensure the commitment and involvment of key stakeholders.

Directorate/federal office responsible SDC
Credit area Swiss cooperation with Eastern Europe
Project partners Contract partner
Swiss Academic and Research Institution
  • Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute
  • University of Geneva

Budget Current phase Swiss budget CHF    4’530’000 Swiss disbursement to date CHF    4’451’810
Project phases

Phase 1 01.01.2015 - 30.09.2020   (Completed)