Food security. On January 13, the World Health Organization (WHO) published a list of health challenges that governments will have to address in the coming decade. WHO warned that world leaders are not investing enough resources in basic health priorities. Among the most urgent challenges are addressing the lack of food, the need to ensure safe food and the need to address unhealthy diets. In publishing this list, WHO provides an indicator of the issues it will likely prioritize in its collaborative work with governments in the region over the next decade.
Through its list of urgent health challenges, WHO highlights the need to eliminate food shortages and ensure safe food and healthy diets. It notes that as people consume foods and beverages high in sugar, saturated fat, trans fat and salt, overweight, obesity and diet-related diseases are increasing globally.
WHO states that all the challenges listed require a response that cannot come only from the health-related sectors of government. People are facing shared threats and it is the responsibility of States to act to improve the health system. As the deadline for the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals approaches rapidly, the United Nations General Assembly has stressed that the next 10 years must be the “decade of action“.
The list published by the WHO points out the challenges that countries must face in public health issues. It recommends countries invest more in domestic financing to address deficiencies in health systems and infrastructure, and calls for more support for the most vulnerable countries. It also urges governments, communities and international organizations to work together to achieve these fundamental objectives.