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ACC Efforts Lead to Passage of Landmark Global NCD Targets by WHO

November 15, 2012

Last September, the United Nations (UN) General Assembly declared the need for global control and prevention of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) at the first ever UN Summit on NCDs. Since then, the ACC has played a pivotal role in the development of a plan for the global campaign to combat NCDs. On Nov. 7, the College’s efforts paid off.

After a lengthy consultation on the issue, member states of the World Health Organization (WHO) championed a set of nine health targets designed to combat NCDs worldwide. These targets include salt intake, alcohol consumption, tobacco use, physical inactivity, diabetes/obesity, blood pressure control, and improvements on drug therapy to prevent heart disease and stroke.

The adoption of these targets was a hard fought victory, one year in the making. Following the initial UN declaration in 2011, the NCD Alliance (of which the ACC is a member) lobbied for the establishment of a concrete goal addressing the worldwide NCD pandemic. This milestone was achieved last May at the 65th session of the World Health Assembly which called for a 25 percent global reduction of pre-mature deaths from NCDs by the year 2025. The ACC has since officially adopted this target as an organizational goal. On the one-year anniversary of the UN Summit on NCDs, the ACC jointly published an official statement with World Heart Federation, the European Society of Cardiology and the American Heart Association urging concrete targets to curb preventable death from cardiovascular diseases. Two months after this call to action, the targets were finally agreed upon under the NCD Alliance's tireless guidance.

This is a milestone achievement for global health and a huge step forward in reversing the pandemic of NCDs. The ACC, in conjunction with the NCD Alliance, will continue its relentless pursuit of effective global action by moving its lobbying efforts to the country level when national plans are implemented next year. The ACC plans to leverage its 6,000 international members and 24 International Chapters to ensure success. For more information, or to get involved in these continuing efforts to reduce the growing global burden of NCDs, contact international@acc.org.

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