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WHO announces Civil Society Working Group for UN High-level Meeting on NCDs

02 Mar 2018

The World Health Organization has announced the members of the Civil Society Working Group on the third UN High-level Meeting on NCDs, which will take place later this year. The Working Group is comprised of 26 civil society representatives and will be co-chaired by NCD Alliance CEO Katie Dain and WHO Assistant Director-General Svetlana Axelrod.

Among the civil society representatives are a number of WHF members and partners, including Dr Monika Arora, Executive Director of the Healthy India Alliance and Emerging Leaders faculty member, Professor Naby Baldé, Africa Regional Chair of the International Diabetes Federation, a member of the Global Coalition for Circulatory Health, Sir Trevor Hassell, President of the Healthy Caribbean Coalition, a WHF member, and Ms Jeehan Mahmood, Secretary General of Tiny Hearts of the Maldives, also a WHF member.

The Working Group’s aim is to advise the WHO Director-General on bold and practical recommendations on mobilising civil society in a meaningful manner to advocate for a successful high-level meeting in New York.

NCDs kill 15 million people between the ages of 30 and 69 each year, and particularly affect low- and lower-middle income countries, where almost 50% of premature deaths from these conditions occur.

In 2015, world leaders committed to reduce premature deaths from NCDs by one third by 2030 as part of the Sustainable Development Goals. Recent WHO reports indicate that the world will struggle to meet that target based on the current rate of change and action.