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WHO Discusses ‘Zero Draft’ Of New Global Mental Health Action Plan

“The World Health Organization (WHO) discussed the ‘zero draft’ of a new Global Mental Health Action Plan last week, which, if adopted, would set clear goals for progress and aim to improve accountability in improving mental health care around the world,” GlobalPost’s “Global Pulse” blog reports. “The action plan will…

Ahead Of World Cancer Day, WHO Survey Shows Half Of All Countries Struggle To Prevent Cancer, Provide Long-Term Treatment

“Ahead of World Cancer Day, the United Nations health agency [Friday] launched a survey showing that more than half of all countries are struggling to prevent cancer and to provide appropriate long-term treatment and care to avoid human suffering and protect countries’ social and economic development,” the U.N. News Centre reports (2/1). “This means, currently…

GAVI Alliance To Fund HPV Immunization Projects In 8 Countries

The GAVI Alliance “is to help protect more than 180,000 girls in eight countries across Africa and Asia from cervical cancer by funding immunization projects with vaccines from Merck and GlaxoSmithKline,” Reuters reports in an article examining the group’s efforts to vaccinate young women with Merck’s Gardasil and GSK’s Cervarix, “the world’s…

Conference Attendees Express Concern Over Growing Burden Of NCDs

Inter Press Service reports on “a conference organized by the International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations (IFPMA) on World Cancer Day [February 4] in Geneva,” during which experts warned about the growing burden of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) — “cancer, heart disease, diabetes and chronic respiratory diseases, among others” — especially…

Researchers Call For Increased Regulation Of Food, Drink Companies For Improvement Of Global Public Health

“Multinational food, drink and alcohol companies are using strategies similar to those employed by the tobacco industry to undermine public health policies, health experts said on Tuesday,” Reuters reports. In a study published in the Lancet, “[t]he researchers said that through the aggressive marketing of ultra-processed food and drink, multinational companies were now major…

Examining Politics Of Reaching NCD Targets

Writing in the PLoS blog “Translational Global Health,” Greg Paton, a public health consultant, discusses the history of and current discussions taking place surrounding global targets for non-communicable diseases (NCDs). Noting the goals include reducing the consumption of salt and trans-fats and increasing access to exercise and healthy food, among others, he…

Integrating NCD Efforts Into Larger ‘Sustainability Agenda’

“The time has come for the ‘[non-communicable disease (NCD)] agenda’ to be integrated with the broader ‘sustainability agenda,’ and this was the focus of a joint meeting this week between the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and the Lancet,” Richard Smith, director of the United Health Group’s chronic…

Reviewing Progress On Inclusion Of NCDs In Development Goals

In a post in the BMJ Group Blogs, Katy Cooper, senior project manager at C3 Collaborating for Health, describes “what is happening around the global framework on non-communicable diseases, and how NCDs link into discussions on the successors to the Millennium Development Goals (due to expire in 2015) and the proposed…

More People Than Ever Overweight, Obese In Developed Countries, OECD Report Says

“More people in developed countries are overweight or obese than ever before, dooming them to years of ill health, pushing up health care costs and piling more pressure on health systems, a report [.pdf] by the OECD found on Tuesday,” Reuters reports. Though the report found that obesity rates are diverse — “from a low of four percent in Japan and Korea to 30 percent or more in the United States and Mexico” – “in more than half of the 34 OECD countries, at least one in two people is now overweight or obese, and rates are projected to rise further,” according to the news agency.