The United Nations General Assembly will hold a High-Level Meeting on non-communicable diseases (NCDs) on 19-20 September 2011 in New York. This meeting is a unique opportunity for the global community to unite to take action against the epidemic of NCDs.
The decision to hold this meeting was made because of the global health, socio-economic, and development impacts of the four main types of NCDs, namely cardiovascular diseases, cancers, chronic respiratory diseases and diabetes. The Caribbean Group of States (CARICOM) called for the high-level meeting In Suriname in 2009, these four types of NCDs were in the top 8 leading causes of death and accounted for nearly half of all deaths. These diseases also share common risk factors including tobacco use, harmful use of alcohol, physical inactivity, and poor diet.
From the WHO website: The High-level Meeting offers an unprecedented opportunity to prioritize NCDs on the global agenda and secure support and commitment from heads of state and government for a coordinated global response to these diseases. This could involve a substantial increase in financial resources for NCD interventions that could stop millions of people dying prematurely and undergoing terrible suffering. The High-level Meeting can also help produce measurable targets and commitments from governments and the international community to act against NCDs.