Noncommunicable Disease Prevention and Control

         The Regional Committee,

         Concerned about the overwhelming burden of preventable and premature mortality due to noncommunicable diseases (NCD) in the Western Pacific Region, as well as its current and projected economic impact;

         Noting the relatively low levels of domestic and international investment in the prevention and control of NCD;

         Observing the progress made in developing national strategies and plans, implementing demonstration projects, and organizing risk factor surveys by many countries and areas in the Region since the adoption of resolution WPR/RC51.R5 on the prevention and control of noncommunicable diseases;

         Recalling the global and regional mandates that support the prevention and control of NCD, including the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control;1 the Global Strategy on Diet, Physical Activity and Health;2 the Western Pacific Regional Strategy to Reduce Alcohol-Related Harm;3 and the Western Pacific Declaration on Diabetes;4

          Noting that the proposed goal of an additional annual 2% reduction in NCD death rates worldwide between 2005 and 2015, as projected in the WHO report Preventing Chronic Diseases: A Vital Investment, could mean 9.7 million fewer deaths in the Western Pacific Region during that period;

1.     URGES Member States:

(1) to develop or strengthen their national strategy on noncommunicable diseases in line with global and regional mandates;

(2) to increase funding, as appropriate, for noncommunicable diseases prevention and control programmes, particularly those that favour health promotion, primary care and population approaches to prevention;

(3) to invest in stronger organizational structures for the management and implementation of noncommunicable diseases prevention and control programmes, in a manner proportionate to the burden;

(4) to scale up effective demonstration activities to the national level, and to establish and extend effective multisectoral partnerships;

(5) to strengthen surveillance mechanisms with periodic national surveys on risk factors, ideally using the WHO STEPwise approach (the WHO-recommended surveillance tool for chronic disease risk factors), to further expand cancer and stroke registration in sentinel populations, and to strengthen data-sharing mechanisms and collaborative analyses already in place, as appropriate;

(6) to work to improve access by all groups in society to effective preventive and primary care using safe and affordable technology;

(7) to develop national mechanisms for networking and knowledge management in the area of noncommunicable diseases;

2.     REQUESTS the Regional Director:

(1) to strengthen technical support for Member States in expanding noncommunicable diseases prevention, control and surveillance within national health systems;

(2) to review and, where appropriate, develop regional guidelines and norms for the implementation and evaluation of noncommunicable diseases prevention and control programmes, and to ensure their continuing relevance to the health systems of countries and areas of the Region;

(3) to establish a regional mechanism for networking and knowledge management in the area of noncommunicable diseases.

1 Resolution WHA56.1.

2 Resolution WHA57.17.

3 Document WPR/RC57/7.

4 Resolution WPR/RC51.R5.

21 September 2006

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