WHO appoints Sri Lankan President to co-chair a high-level commission on preventing non-communicable diseases

The World Health Organization (WHO) has appointed Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena to co-chair a high-level commission on preventing and control of non-communicable diseases (NCDs).

Along with the Sri Lankan President, President Tabaré Vázquez of Uruguay, President Sauli Niinistö of Finland, Minister of Healthcare of the Russian Federation Veronika Skvortsova, and former Federal Minister of Pakistan Sania Nishtar will co-chiar the WHO Independent Global High-level Commission on NCDs.

The group will propose bold and innovative solutions to accelerate prevention and control of the leading killers on the planet – noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) like heart and lung disease, cancers, and diabetes.

Seven in 10 deaths globally every year are from NCDs, the main contributors to which are tobacco use, harmful use of alcohol, unhealthy diets, and physical inactivity, according to the WHO.

The new Commission was established by WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus and runs until October 2019. It will provide actionable recommendations to contribute to the Third United Nations General Assembly High-level Meeting on NCDs scheduled for the second half of 2018.

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