ABSTRACT: Chronic disease, and particularly cardiovascular disease (CVD), is the major cause of death in most developed countries, despite the downward trend observed during the last three decades. Although CVD is emerging in developing countries, little is known there about comprehensive preventive measures for controlling its expansion.The health care system in Tunisia faces the challenge of increasing rates of CVD risk factors. Epidemiologic studies show high levels of CVD risk factors among Tunisian adults and children. Evidence shows that several risk factors and conditions are commonly associated with major chronic diseases. Integrated actions against selected risk factors (i.e., smoking, physical inactivity, and unhealthy diet), implemented within the social context, can lead to the reduction of major chronic diseases. These interventions should take place early in childhood.In Tunisia, a much-needed community-based intervention program to control CVD is being planned. This program will promote healthy living, smoke-free air, healthy nutrition, regular physical activity, and supportive living and working environments. Its ultimate goal is to reduce the burden of CVD and its related behaviors. A description of this program and how it will be implemented and assessed in the region of Sousse, Tunisia, is presented.
Preventing Chronic Disease. 01/2005;