Statement 12 October 2023

IFPMA statement on NCDs progress at the 70th WHO EMRO Regional Committee


On 12 October in Cairo, Egypt, IFPMA submitted a statement at the 70th WHO EMRO Regional Committee on agenda item EM/RC70/INF.DOC.8: Progress report on accelerating regional implementation of the Political Declaration of the Third High-Level Meeting of the General Assembly on the Prevention and Control of NCDs.

The International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations (IFPMA) welcomes this progress report on accelerating regional action on non-communicable diseases (NCDs), as well as its progress reports on addressing diabetes as a public health challenge and on scaling mental health care. We thank you for the opportunity to submit a statement on this important global health challenge.

We are encouraged to read that more than 50 percent of the region has an operational, multisectoral national strategy or action plan that integrates the major NCDs and their risk factors – but we know that we are off track to achieve SDG-related health targets, including SDG 3.4 to reduce by one-third premature mortality from NCDs worldwide. We also acknowledge the progress report’s results that current expenditure for NCD-related services is not sufficient to address the NCD burden in the region.

IFPMA and our members are decades-long partners in joint efforts to address NCDs. Our actions are guided by our Framework for Action on NCDs, which was created in 2011 and revised in 2015 to respond to the WHO’s Global Action Plan on the Prevention and Control of NCDs. These action areas include:

  • Innovation: Investing in the discovery of new medicines and vaccines to prevent and fight diseases
  • Availability: Promoting policies that drive expanded access to treatment and care
  • Empowerment of people living with NCDs: Ensuring the design and implementation of policy solutions that are co-created with people living with NCDs
  • Capacity building: Working with health systems and their funders to build capacity that can effectively prevent, diagnose, treat, and manage life-long conditions.

The innovative pharmaceutical industry is active in 24 Eastern Mediterranean regional NCDs collaborations with partners. Examples of these programs include Be He@lthy, Be Mobile, the Global Breast Cancer Initiative, and the Global Initiative on Childhood Cancer.

We agree that lessons learned from COVID-19 amplify the need to ensure a continuum of care for people living with NCDs in emergencies and at the primary healthcare level. We also support commitment to strengthen national capacity for implementing surveillance activities and programs to monitor WHO global voluntary targets for NCDs by 2025, at which point we will have another occasion to review and recommit to progress on NCDs during the next UN High-Level Meeting on NCDs.

Progress requires high-level multisectoral engagement that fosters innovation and improves access to medicines and vaccines for NCDs. Sustainable financing mechanisms, with strong leadership from ministries of health and finance, is also essential. Integration of NCDs care at the primary healthcare level and as part of national universal health coverage (UHC) packages will help ensure ready and resilient health systems – which are critical to better cope with the next health emergency.

We also commend the Regional Office’s support in the development of a global WHO framework for the meaningful engagement of people living with NCDs and mental health conditions. We remain committed to building access solutions with and for people living with NCDs, contributing to stronger health systems and improving people’s quality of care.

Finally, we note the region’s efforts to mitigate the health challenges posed by air pollution and climate change. Innovative pharmaceutical companies recognize the effects on people’s health and are researching and developing new technologies to help them. In that context, our industry is committed to minimizing the environmental impact of its operations and products on the planet.

Thank you.


The International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations (IFPMA) represents over 90 innovative pharmaceutical companies and associations around the world. Our industry’s almost three million employees discover, develop, and deliver medicines and vaccines that advance global health. Based in Geneva, IFPMA has official relations with the United Nations and contributes industry expertise to help the global health community improve the lives of people everywhere. For more information, visit

Learn more

Media Contact

Elliot Dunster