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Statement to the 66th World Health Assembly on the WHO Global Action Plan on NCDs

A short statement on the WHO Global Action Plan on NCDs is being submitted to the sixty-sixth session of the World Health Assembly on behalf of the International Association for the Study of Obesity (IASO) and the International Obesity Task Force (IOTF), with the co-signatories of World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF International), Consumers International (CI), World Public Health Nutrition Association (WPHNA), World Action on Salt & Health (WASH) and the UK Health Forum. It will be presented by Modi Mwatsama if the chance arises.

The statement highlights the support of civil society organizations to the objectives of the Action Plan on NCDs, as well as their willingness to help achieve them. It also indicates the need to strengthen institutional and workforce capacity and to fully implement of the Set of Recommendations on Marketing to Children, among other actions. Read the full statement below, or download the PDF here.

During WHA there will also be a campaign against the marketing of unhealthy foods to children, where Ronald McDonald and Tony the Tiger will be handing out their CVs in search for new jobs.

 

Statement to the 66th World Health Assembly

We welcome the WHO Global Action Plan on NCDs and call on member states to adopt it.

Diet related risk factors account for 40% of NCDs. We therefore support the objectives to reduce modifiable diet and alcohol risk factors, and to include diet-related targets and indicators on salt, obesity, alcohol, blood pressure, fruit and vegetables, saturated fats, cholesterol and alcohol.

Secondly, we urge member states to support the inclusion of the full range of policy and regulatory options outlined in paragraphs 37 to 39 including implementation of the Set of Recommendations on Marketing to Children; the development of clear, consumer-friendly food labels; economic and fiscal tools to incentivise healthier food environments and choices; measures to reduce the level of salt, saturated fats and sugar intakes including in processed food and drinks and measures to increase consumption of fruit and

vegetables.

Thirdly, we urge member states to strengthen institutional and workforce capacity including the establishment of public health institutions without conflicts of interest to deal with commercial issues such as advertising and the limitations of industry self-regulation as outlined in paragraph 30. We also welcome the inclusion of management of real, perceived or potential conflicts of interest as an underpinning principle in the Action Plan and urge WHO to develop technical tools to support implementation and

assessment in line with paragraph 31.

Fourthly, we support the proposal in Appendix 4 to harmonise UN action to reduce diet-related risk factors for NCDs. We call on this process to include determinants such as cross-border trade, agricultural policies, marketing and the regular monitoring of food and nutrition environments with clear accountability mechanisms.

Lastly, we urge member states and WHO to engage and support public interest non-governmental organisations

to help achieve these important diet-related NCD objectives.

Thank you.

 

For more information, contact Modi Mwatsama modi.mwatsama@ukhealthforum.org.uk or Tim Lobstein tim.lobstein@iaso.org

 

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