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CANSA CEO Participating NCD Advocacy Institute Accelerator Programme

CANSA’s CEO, Elize Joubert, is participating as a member of the SA NCD Alliance in the NCD Advocacy Institute Accelerator Programme, taking place from 20 – 24 May 2017, during the 70th Session of the World Health Organization’s (WHO) World Health Assembly (WHA) in Geneva, Switzerland.

Seen 8th from the left: Elize Joubert CANSA’s CEO

About World Health Assembly (WHA)

The 70th Session of the World Health Organization’s (WHO) World Health Assembly (WHA) will take place in Geneva, Switzerland from 22nd to 31st May 2017.

In May every year, Ministers of Health from all over the world come together in Geneva to discuss global health challenges and policy at the World Health Assembly (WHA), the decision-making body of the World Health Organisation (WHO).

NCDA’s key advocacy messages for the 70th World Health Assembly focus on preparations for a successful 2018 UN High Level Meeting on NCDs, Appendix III endorsement and intervention implementation, Childhood Obesity monitoring and evaluation framework, financing and resourcing for NCD prevention and control, and a call to the next Director General of the WHO.

From Global Commitment to National Action

The 70th World Health Assembly taking place in May 2017 will review and hopefully approve a cancer resolution, developed in the past year as a result of UICC’s collective advocacy and call to action from the 2016 World Cancer Leaders’ Summit.

This is a clear signal that our governments around the world recognise cancer as a global health priority; the resolution reconfirms the key role for cancer control in the non-communicable disease (NCD) agenda, as well as underscoring critical steps to accelerate national implementation.

The 2017 cancer resolution provides countries with guidance across the care continuum, from health promotion and risk factor reduction, with particular emphasis on the tobacco control policies laid out in the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) and anti-cancer vaccines, to the need to address inequity in access to early detection, timely and appropriate treatment, including pain relief and palliative care. The resolution also includes an emphasis on evidence-based outcomes for all people living with cancer, and inclusion of the special population of children, adolescents and young adults with cancer.

New is the emphasis on integration of cancer efforts across national health plans and the call for scale up of activities in the line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Specifically, the resolution identifies four key drivers for impacting on cancer mortality by 2025 that are supported by the updated WHO cost-effectiveness recommendations for non-communicable diseases (NCDs):

  • Early diagnosis programmes for cervical, breast, colorectal and oral cancers
  • Development of partnerships, referral networks and of centres of excellence for improving the quality of cancer diagnosis, treatment and care services and facilitating multidisciplinary cooperation
  • Training of health professionals at all levels of health care, and
  • Strengthening of palliative care and promotion of cancer survivor follow-up and rehabilitation.

Follow Updates on Social Media:


The reduction of cancer offers the most promising means of lowering the cancer burden in low and middle-income countries. CANSA successfully lobbied local Government on a proposed Sugar Tax to support the indirect taxation on sugar sweetened beverages to prevent and control NCD’s and that this tax be channelled to address severe resource constraints to fight NCD’s in South Africa.   Despite being met with overwhelming resistance by the beverage Industry, CANSA encouraged the public to sign a petition in support. The Minister of Finance announced the introduction of this tax, with effect 1 April 2017 to help reduce excessive sugar intake.

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