ECPO Executive Director Vicki Mooney at the 74th World Health Assembly

ECPO Executive Director Vicki Mooney at the 74th World Health Assembly

The 74th World Health Assembly (WHA74) commenced on 24 May 2021 and concluded its sessions on 31 May 2021. In light of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic the event was held virtually and the European Coalition for People Living with Obesity (ECPO) Executive Director Vicki Mooney was invited to deliver a political declaration at the third high-level meeting of the General Assembly on the prevention and control of non-communicable diseases (NCDs).

The statement placed an emphasis on obesity as an NCD and a gateway to 80-85% of type 2 diabetes, and shed light on how off-track global obesity targets are, whilst urging member states to act on 4 critical points.

  • To recognise obesity as a disease as well as a risk factor for other NCDs like diabetes, cancer and cardiovascular diseases
  • In-line with priority areas outlined in the Global Diabetes Compact, to call on WHO to conduct a review of the implementation of the report of the Commission on Ending Childhood Obesity and to develop an implementation monitoring and accountability framework
  • To advocate for people-centred care and ensure that people living with NCDs are included in the development and evaluation of interventions and guidelines
  • Following the mandate from this Resolution, to support WHO in developing recommendations to inform a future roadmap for obesity, including a Resolution that addresses prevention, treatment and management of the disease

Following this statement, Member States extended the GMC/NCDs mandate to 2030 with a request “to ensure that the WHO global coordination mechanism on the prevention and control of noncommunicable diseases carries out its functions in a way that is integrated with the Organization’s ongoing work on noncommunicable diseases, including … as a convener of civil society, including people living with noncommunicable diseases, to raise awareness and build capacity for their meaningful participation in national noncommunicable diseases responses”

As a patient and executive director of ECPO I was humbled and honoured to deliver this statement on behalf of World Obesity, representing ECPO and EASO in Europe at this high level event.