Legal priorities for prevention of non-communicable diseases: innovations from WHO’s Eastern Mediterranean region

by L.O. Gostin, H. Abou-Taleb, S.A. Roache et al.
Public Health 144 (2017) 4e12

9 pp. 1.2 MB

Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) are the leading cause of death globally and in the World Health Organization’s (WHO) Eastern Mediterranean region (EMR). This paper reports on a research collaboration between the WHO’s Eastern Mediterranean Office (EMRO) and the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law at Georgetown University that aims to identify (1) regionally relevant, cost-effective and affordable legal interventions to prevent NCDs, and (2) methods to strengthen implementation and enforcement. The authors conclude that in the EMR, and globally, law can be a cost-effective and affordable means of curbing underlying drivers of the NCD pandemic, such as rampant junk food marketing. Building upon this research, EMRO has identified 10 priority interventions in the areas of tobacco control, unhealthy diets and NCD governance. The EMRO/O’Neill Institute partnership will develop guidance tools and capacity building initiatives to support Member States to harness the power of law to achieve population health improvements.

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