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Systems Science for Caribbean Health: the development and piloting of a model for guiding policy on diabetes in the Caribbean.

Systems Science for Caribbean Health: the development and piloting of a model for guiding policy on diabetes in the Caribbean.
Author Information (click to view)

Guariguata L, Guell C, Samuels TA, Rouwette EA, Woodcock J, Hambleton IR, Unwin N,


Guariguata L, Guell C, Samuels TA, Rouwette EA, Woodcock J, Hambleton IR, Unwin N, (click to view)

Guariguata L, Guell C, Samuels TA, Rouwette EA, Woodcock J, Hambleton IR, Unwin N,

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Health research policy and systems 2016 Oct 2614(1) 79
Abstract
BACKGROUND
Diabetes is highly prevalent in the Caribbean, associated with a high morbidity and mortality and is a recognised threat to economic and social development. Heads of Government in the Caribbean Community came together in 2007 and declared their commitment to reducing the burden of non-communicable diseases (NCDs), including diabetes, by calling for a multi-sectoral, systemic response. To facilitate the development of effective policies, policymakers are being engaged in the development and use of a system dynamics (SD) model of diabetes for Caribbean countries.

METHODS
Previous work on a diabetes SD model from the United States of America (USA) is being adapted to a local context for three countries in the region using input from stakeholders, a review of existing qualitative and quantitative data, and collection of new qualitative data. Three country models will be developed using one-on-one stakeholder engagement and iterative revision. An inter-country model will also be developed following a model-building workshop. Models will be compared to each other and to the USA model. The inter-country model will be used to simulate policies identified as priorities by stakeholders and to develop targets for prevention and control. The model and model-building process will be evaluated by stakeholders and a manual developed for use in other high-burden developing regions.

DISCUSSION
SD has been applied with success for health policy development in high-income country settings. The utility of SD in developing countries as an aid to policy decision-making related to NCDs has not been tested. This study represents the first of its kind.

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