A Ghanaian health related Non-Governmental Organization (NGO), Breast Cancer International (BCI) Ghana, is among Government, Civil Society, Academia and the Private Sector, invited at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, to take stock of progress in implementing the 2011 UN Political Declaration on Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs).
BCI, which is a member of Union of International Cancer Control (UICC), was represented by the Founder and the President, Dr. (Mrs) Beatrice Wiafe Addai at the UN General Assembly.
A Civil Society representative and the President elect of (UICC), Prof. Tezer Kutluk, was selected by the UN General Assembly, through a review process prior to the meeting, to speak during the opening plenary session.
This comes almost three years after UICC Ambassador, Her Royal Highness Princess Dina Mired, gave the opening Keynote address at the 2011 UN High-level Meeting on NCDs.
Drawing on his experience as a pediatric oncologist, Prof. Kutluk highlighted some of the key challenges in addressing cancer and other NCDs, particularly in low income settlements.
He concluded by calling on Member States and the international community to transfer progress at the global level into national action and implementation by: developing costed multisectoral national NCD plans; ensuring that NCDs are central to the post-2015 agenda; addressing the global resources gap in NCDs; and finally by supporting a people’s movement on NCDs that is rooted in human rights and social justice.
This UN Review meeting was the second time ever that NCDs have a standalone political meeting at the UN General Assembly, and represented a major turning point in moving from commitment to action and a unique opportunity for ministers to further shape the global NCD agenda, reaffirm their political commitment, raise the priority given to NCDs on national and international development agendas, and call for action to address remaining gaps.
This was reflected in the action-oriented outcome document adopted at the meeting.