Targets Set To Reduce Non-Communicable Diseases

Targets Set To Reduce Non-Communicable Diseases

Mon 28 May 2012

Story by The Food Revolution Team

First global target on non-communicable diseases demands a reduction in preventable deaths by 25% by 2025.

Following the 65th World Health Assembly which took place last week in Geneva, a number of new health measures have been set. Included in these, for the first time ever, is a target to reduce premature deaths from non-communicable diseases (NCDs) (heart disease, cancers, diabetes and chronic respiratory diseases) by 25% by 2025 (1).

NCDs, which are largely preventable, have become the biggest killers worldwide - 36 million people die each year due to NCDs (2). Among the leading causes of NCDs is obesity, which having doubled worldwide since 1980, with 1.5 billion adults and 43 million preschool children being overweight, now accounts for 2.8 million deaths each year (3). Being overweight and obese is also related to 44% of the diabetes burden (346 million cases worldwide of which 90% are type 2 diabetes (4)), 23% of heart disease cases and up to 41% of cancer rates (3).

In addition to the overarching target of reducing premature deaths from NCDs by 25%, Member States have also committed a consensus before the end of October, on additional targets relating to the four main risk factors for NCDs; unhealthy diet and physical inactivity, harmful use of alcohol and tobacco use. Further targets relating to obesity, fat intake, alcohol and cholesterol are also being considered.

With 12% of the world’s population now considered obese (5), these targets are vital to help make a difference worldwide and reverse the current trend.

Ann Keeling, Chair of the NCD Alliance and CEO of the International Diabetes Federation declared:

“The adoption of this bold and ambitious target is a landmark event in the fight against NCDs. For the first time all governments will be accountable for progress on NCDs. The NCD Alliance and its members and partners around the world have worked tirelessly for nearly a year for this. On behalf of the hundreds of millions of people with NCDs, we are delighted to see this result.”

We look forward to seeing these targets put into place and further NCD targets being set by October.

Find out more about the targets set here.

The Food Revolution Team


1. NCD AllianceFirst Global Target On NCDs Demands A Reduction In Preventable Deaths By 25% by 2025
2. WHONCD Summary Report
3. WHO Obesity and Overweight Factsheet
4. WHODiabetes Factsheet
5. WHO New Data Highlights Increases In Hypertension, Diabetes Incidence

Photo Credit: WHO/Pierre Albouy


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