Ahead Of U.N. HLM On NCDs, Lancet Pieces Discuss Recommendations To Accelerate Global Progress On NCDs

The Lancet: Reducing NCDs globally: the under-recognized role of environmental risk factors
Rajiv Chowdhury, principal researcher and associate professor in the School of Clinical Medicine’s Department of Public Health and Primary Care at the University of Cambridge, and colleagues, on behalf of the Research Councils U.K.-CAPABLE Programme on Environmental Hazards and Non-Communicable Diseases

“This month, the WHO Independent High-Level Commission on Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) published a set of recommendations to accelerate progress towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals Target 3.4 for reducing NCDs by 2030. Unfortunately, this globally important report had a major omission: recognizing the detrimental role of environmental risk factors, beyond the conventional behavioral factors (tobacco and alcohol use, physical inactivity, and unhealthy diet), in enhancing global NCD burden and health inequality. … The current WHO report … would benefit greatly by explicitly recognizing the importance of major environmental risk factors — such as toxic chemicals and indoor and outdoor air pollution — in reducing NCD burden, beyond the roles of conventional behavioral risk factors. Such considerations are essential to gain wider sociopolitical support for promoting appropriate legislation to regulate water, food, and air quality; national and regional standards for environmental health protection; and adequate investments towards reducing NCDs attributed to these major global determinants” (7/21).

The Lancet: The how: a message for the U.N. high-level meeting on NCDs
Members of Friends of the U.N. HLM on NCDs

“…The WHO Independent High-Level Commission on NCDs made a number of solid proposals to inform [the U.N. General Assembly High-Level Meeting (HLM) on NCDs] negotiations. … We propose an agenda for member state HLM negotiators. … First, accountability must be assigned at the highest political levels. … Second, improving fiscal policies should be prioritized. … Third, additional financial resources must be mobilized. … Fourth, the commercial determinants of health should be more rigorously regulated. … Fifth, the growing impact of pollution and urbanization on NCDs, injuries, and mental health must be addressed. … Sixth, support should be provided for meaningful civil society engagement. … Seventh, principles of equity, human rights, and gender equality must be upheld. … Finally, independent accountability should be fostered…” (7/21).

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