Oman | Programme areas | Prevention and communicable diseases

Prevention and communicable diseases

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Communicable diseases

Oman has been very successful in controlling or eradicating major communicable diseases; including vaccine-preventable diseases and respiratory infections, diarrhoeal diseases, malaria and tuberculosis. However, due to Oman’s geographical location, the potential for re-emergence of malaria, other emerging diseases and the persistence of zoonotic diseases demands a strong and vigilant surveillance system. Although HIV prevalence in the general population, efforts are made to put in place interventions focused on high-risk behaviours to curtail the country from moving to a concentrated epidemic.  Sexually-transmitted infections and foodborne diseases are other infectious diseases that are emerging as priority concerns in the area of communicable diseases.

Noncommunicable diseases

Diseases related to lifestyle and demographic transition are now priority diseases. Diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and cancer are leading causes of morbidity and mortality. A screening programme for those aged 40 years and above was established to ensure early management of these chronic illnesses.  Obesity, as well as persistent micronutrient deficiencies, particularly anaemia are a concern. Injury prevention, particularly road safety and mental health are important items on the public health agenda. Because many of these issues are related to lifestyle, the Ministry of Health is actively promoting health in schools and may expand into colleges and work places.


Oman, similar to many countries in the Region, is experiencing nutrition transition with a double burden of under-nutrition and specific micronutrient deficiencies, as well as levels of overweight and obesity. Low intake of iron, zinc, vitamin A and dietary fibre along with high intake of saturated fat, sodium chloride and possibly transfat are concerns. The national food-based dietary guidelines were launched recently to address these concerns.

Key health-related statistics

Total population (000s) 4560
Total health expenditure (% of general government expenditure) 6.7
Maternal mortality ratio (per 100 000 live births) 17
Primary health care units and centres (per 10 000 population) 5.1
Total life expectancy at birth (years) 76.9

Source: Framework for health information systems and core indicators for monitoring health situation and health system performance, 2018

Oman country health profile

Regional Health Observatory

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Oman WHO headquarters page