FoCP Hosts First Eastern Mediterranean Non-communicable Disease Alliance Meeting - FOCP

FoCP Hosts First Eastern Mediterranean Non-communicable Disease Alliance Meeting

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FoCP support for regional NCD Alliance with agenda for funding and operating plans to 2019


For immediate release
Sharjah, 9 July, 2017

The Sharjah-based not-for-profit organisation Friends of Cancer Patients (FoCP), dedicated to providing financial and moral support to cancer patients and promoting public awareness about cancer, has hosted the first ever Eastern Mediterranean Non-communicable Disease Alliance (EMNCDA) meeting.

A number of the region’s most influential civil society medical organisations and a network of major non-governmental health organisations came together to focus on the causes, prevention, management and control of non-communicable diseases, and the policies and strategies needed to achieve the Alliance’s aims.

Representatives at EMNCDA – of which FoCP is a board member – included delegates from the UAE, Iran, Kuwait, Lebanon, Morocco, Pakistan, Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and Iran across a range of health issues from cancer, heart and lung disease, diabetes and those in palliative care.

As part of the meeting, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Lebanon gave short presentations of their key national achievements, followed by full discussion from all members on funding and operating plans for 2017-2019.

HE Noha Safar, Vice Chairperson FoCP Board of Directives, said: “It is essential that we keep non-communicable diseases at the forefront of healthcare decision making and the greatest way for us to achieve that is through the official international channels which have the power to change policies and strategies. The research and development resources that are needed not only provide relief and comfort for those that are suffering today, they are also an investment in the healthcare budgets of the future.

“In hosting this Eastern Mediterranean NCD Alliance meeting, we are helping to strengthen both national and regional action, consolidating our efforts and working together to create a more influential, cohesive entity which will undoubtedly raise the profiles of examination, prevention and treatment.

“It is with great thanks to the leadership, support and generosity of Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher Bint Mohammed Al-Qasimi, wife of His Highness the Ruler of Sharjah, and Founder and Royal Patron of the Friends of Cancer Patients and Patron of Global NCD Alliance Forum that we can contribute more to such a noble cause.”

EMNCDA has three interrelated functions – advocacy, capacity building and mobilizing knowledge, with the goal of creating solutions that inspire action and build healthier lives, free of non-communicable diseases.

Among its key objectives, the new regional alliance will campaign for governments to consider NCDs as top priority in their health agendas, generate public awareness through promoting a healthy lifestyle, and establish regional platforms for networking, knowledge exchange and support.

The NCD Alliance has mobilised a highly influential network of advocates – at the latest count there were 52 national and regional NCD alliances worldwide, providing vital platforms to drive local progress.

Sharjah also hosted the very first Global NCD Alliance Forum in 2015, which resulted in the landmark call to action, the ‘Sharjah Declaration on NCDs: Civil Society United Towards 2030’, which sets out a commitment to support the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. It issues recommendations for governments, the UN system, the business community and international media to accelerate action on NCDs.

Through the landmark ‘2011 UN Political Declaration on NCD Prevention and Control’; the ‘2025 Global NCD Targets’; and the ‘WHO Global NCD Action Plan 2013-2020’, Sharjah has set national responsibilities based on mutually agreed ambitions.

Sharjah will also be hosting the Global NCD Alliance Forum 2017 taking place in December, where organisers expect mass-participation from leading international health organisations, experts and specialists, and representatives from local and regional NCD organisations

The three-day Global NCD Alliance Forum takes place from 9-11 December, 2017.

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