Speaking up for the poor at WHO dialogue on NCDs and development

Author: Nancy Ferguson, NCD Synergies
May 15, 2015
Nancy Ferguson / Partners In HealthDr. Gene Bukhman participates in the opening session of the WHO GCM Dialogue on NCDs and development cooperation, 20-21 April 2015 in Geneva, Switzerland.

Nancy Ferguson / Partners In Health
Dr. Gene Bukhman, shown at right, and the NCD Synergies team join other members of the WHO Global Coordination Mechanism on the Prevention and Control of NCDs in the opening session of the Dialogue on NCDs and development cooperation, 20-21 April 2015 in Geneva, Switzerland.

On April 20-21, 2015, the NCD Synergies team attended the WHO Dialogue on NCDs and Development Cooperation, which was an opportunity to bring the international community together around noncommunicable diseases, poverty, and development. The meeting in Geneva was hosted by the WHO Global Coordination Mechanism on NCDs, and included representatives from Permanent Missions to the United Nations, eight different United Nations organizations, as well as civil society attendees from academic institutions, NGOs, and philanthropic institutions.

Photo credit: WHO
Attendees of the WHO Dialogue on NCDs and development cooperation, 20-21 April 2015, including the NCD Synergies team and partners from ministries of health in Rwanda, Kenya, Malawi, and Tanzania.

NCD Synergies director Dr. Gene Bukhman, who sits on the WHO GCM working group on financing for NCDs, opened a panel discussion on the first day of the meeting on “NCDs, Injuries, and Extreme Poverty” that also featured keynote speakers Dr. Marie Aimee Muhimpundu of Rwanda and Dr. Beatrice Mwagomba of Malawi. Dr. Bukhman’s presentation (Bukhman. Session 3. Presentation, PDF, 950 kb) was a strong call to the WHO and attendees to include the needs of the very poor in global NCD financing strategies. The presentations from Rwanda and Malawi made clear that much of the NCD burden among the poor is falling on children and younger adults. Little of this burden was explained by so-called lifestyle risk factors, and a treatment action agenda appropriate for these populations is an urgent need.

Maia Olsen / Partners In Health Dr. Gene Bukhman, Dr. Beatrice Mwagomba, and Dr. Marie Aimee Muhimpundu give their keynote presentations in Session 3 of the WHO GCM Dialogue on NCDs and development cooperation on April 20, 2015.

Maia Olsen / Partners In Health
Dr. Gene Bukhman, Dr. Beatrice Mwagomba, and Dr. Marie Aimee Muhimpundu give their keynote presentations in Session 3 of the WHO GCM Dialogue on NCDs and development cooperation on April 20, 2015.

NCD Synergies partner country representatives Dr. Joseph Kibachio of Kenya and Dr. William Kafura of Tanzania also gave keynote presentations as part of other sessions during the dialogue. In addition to the WHO discussions, the NCD Synergies team held several side meetings featuring the voices of our colleagues and partners in Rwanda, Kenya, Malawi, and Tanzania.

For more information or to read the conference report, visit the WHO GCM website.