The worldwide prevention and control of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) were the focus of a recent General Assembly of the United Nations held in New York. More than 30 heads of state, ministers of health and other policy makers came together to discuss the challenges, social and economic impacts associated with preventing and controlling NCDs, particularly for developing countries. It resulted in the adoption of a political declaration on NCDs – only the second of its kind to address a health issue on a global scale.
Following the meeting, the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) released a position paper congratulating United Nation member states for their acknowledgement that cancer and other NCDs are a challenge of epidemic proportions that require a co-ordinated and sustainable response on a global scale.
The UICC welcome cancer-specific commitments made by the United Nations to help reduce the global cancer burden, including plans to:
- give greater priority to early detection, screening programs and diagnoses (particularly for breast and cervical cancer
- increase access to Hepatitis B and HPV vaccines to prevent infection-related cancers