UN health agency agrees on action plan for non-communicable diseases

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Maternal health in Afghanistan (WHO /Christopher Black)

A draft action plan to prevent and control non-communicable diseases has been agreed to by participants in the World Health Assembly under way in Geneva.

The announcement was made by the World Health Organization (WHO) during a press conference on Monday.

The agency says non-communicable diseases such as cancer, diabetes, asthma and hypertension, kill more than 36 million people around the world each year.

Dr Shanthi Mendis who coordinates the WHO's global programme for the prevention and management of non-communicable diseases, says the action plan has two components.

"One is a set of actions for member states, a set of actions for UN partners as well as the Secretariat and a set of actions for international partners. The other integral component is the global monitoring framework. Both together, therefore, will enable all these actors to implement the actions collectively while monitoring the progress."

Dr. Mendis says the action plan is a very powerful instrument to reduce death from non-communicable diseases by 25 per cent by the year 2025.

Derrick Mbatha, United Nations.

Duration: 1’19″

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