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Members: Francesco Cappuccio (leader), Rainford Wilks, Adriana Blanco, Dan Chisholm, Ricardo Correa-Rotter, Mary L’Abbé

The surveillance team is a working subgroup of the PAHO/WHO Regional Expert Group on Cardiovascular disease prevention through dietary salt reduction that serves as the primary source for evidence-based policies. The subgroup was established during the launch of the Initiative on 9-12 September 2009, at the PAHO HQ, Washington, D.C.


The following priorities were identified by the subgroup:

      • Determine the salt intake per country
      • Set the minimum requirements for a common protocol with scientific rigor
      • Compile other existing studies with data on salt intake (e.g. industry sources)
      • Gather context variables with salt intake data (demographic, socioeconomic, geographic)
      • Determine the sources of dietary salt per country (e.g. common food basket)
      • Initiate and advocate surveillance in the region contingent on the availability of funds
      • Develop a survey on the knowledge, attitude and behavior toward dietary salt and health

The following 6-, 10- and 24-months markers were set by the group to address the priorities identified:

 At 6 months

        • Identify potential signatories to the policy statement and approach
        • Determine gaps in current surveillance systems
        • Coordinate with fortification sub group regarding plans to monitor iodine parallel to sodium
        • Collect options for protocols and methods
        • Draft surveillance plan and schedule

At 10 months

        • Develop a surveillance tool box with information on protocols, and pros and cons of methods and statistical considerations
        • Measure baseline for country or in index countries: salt intake, sources of salt, contexts
        • Share, collaborate on, and build databases on sodium intake and sodium in foods to achieve best in class
        • Define burden of disease related to salt for countries in the region
        • Confirm methods and components for costs and benefits estimates for regional and country levels

At 24 months

        • Report on surveillance (salt intake, sources, contexts)
        • Facilitate long term surveillance and monitoring
Last Updated on Thursday, 06 January 2011 05:52



Has the latest published material by the sub group:

·         protocol for population level sodium determination on 24 hour urine collection,

·         position on methods and statistical consideration

Go to download page.

Databases and targets

Has links to databases that include sodium/salt content of food products to assist countries to engage in negotiations with the respective food industries and facilitate (where possible) food product comparison. Read more…

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