On 21 September 2022, the President of Ghana, the Prime Minister of Norway, and WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus convened the first-ever Annual Gathering of a Group of Heads of State and Government for the Prevention and Control of Noncommunicable Diseases, alongside the 77th Session of the United Nations General Assembly.
Several Heads of State and Government reiterated their commitment to deliver on the Global NCD Compact, as well as Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) targets 3.4 on Noncommunicable Diseases (NCD) and 3.8 on Universal Health Coverage (UHC).
On 7 October 2022, the World Heart Federation attended a follow up multistakeholder dialogue, co-hosted by NCD Alliance and the World Health Organization. A range of non-State actors, including the civil society and people living with NCDs, were able to showcase their contribution, value, and complementary roles in the prevention and control of NCDs, as well as the areas of commitment of the Global NCD Compact. In particular, the need to integrate NCDs into primary health care and emergency preparedness and response plans was a recurring topic at the event.
In addition, panellists highlighted the importance of leadership and political will at the highest level, as many countries are increasingly recognizing the urgent need to address the burden of NCDs, particularly low- and middle-income countries that are currently facing the double burden of communicable and non-communicable diseases. As such, multistakeholder engagement can, without a doubt, be leveraged to influence and support the Heads of State and Government Group in galvanizing more actions at the national, regional, and global levels.
In her closing remarks, Dr Bente Mikkelsen described a golden window of opportunity to accelerate actions and encouraged non-State actors to build consensus as well as develop collaborative actions on NCDs, UHC, and the SDGs. In 2023, non-State actors will have the chance to engage in a number of high-level events, including two meetings in the Small Island Developing States (SIDS) hosted by the Ministry of Health of Barbados, several ministerial conferences, a high-level meeting on NCDs and Emergencies, and the UN High-Level Meeting on UHC.
The World Heart Federation will continue to engage in the Global NCD Compact and reiterates its commitment to supporting joint actions on NCDs, UHC, and the SDGs, in preparation for the UN High-Level Meeting on NCDs in 2025 and beyond.