Non-communicable diseases. On May 1st, the High Level Independent Commission on Noncommunicable Diseases (NCD) of the World Health Organization (WHO) published a draft document of recommendations to strengthen the fight against NCDs. Among the suggestions for the member countries, it stands out the encouragement for States to explore legislative solutions to minimize the production, commercialization and consumption of products harmful to health, especially in children. The final version of the report will be presented on June 1st.
The document prepared by the Commission also proposes that the 194 countries that have representation in the WHO establish effective measures to achieve the reduction of sodium and the elimination of trans fats from processed foods and the treatment of patients with hypertension. At the same time, it recommends budget prioritization of public sector expenditures to address the treatment of NCDs and to deepen sustainable production and consumption policies. From WHO they point out that the capital destined for Health will generate greater income by increasing the productivity of their populations.
The document emphasizes that applying these recommendations will reduce the annual percentage of premature deaths due to cardiovascular diseases and diabetes, among others. They stress out that the consumption of unhealthy foods is one of the biggest risk factors and that the partnership between the public and private sectors is key to generating changes in the population’s eating habits.
The preliminary document of the High Level Commission will serve as the basis for the Third High Level Meeting on NCDs of the WHO, which will take place September 27 in New York. For the recommendations of this body to be put into practice, it is necessary that the different executive and legislative powers take them as their own. Given the weight of WHO in the region, it is expected that once the formal presentation of the recommendations is completed, a process of regulatory adaptation will begin.