World Federation of Societies of Anaesthesiologists
The World Federation of Societies of Anaesthesiologists (WFSA) commends the work of the WHO in addressing the global non communicable diseases (NCDs) crisis. We welcome some of the outcomes of the Political Declaration of the third high-level meeting of the General Assembly on the prevention and control NCCs, reaffirming the commitment to combating NCDs.
A significant number of NCDs are not preventable. The WFSA is concerned that the Political Declaration of the third High-level Meeting of the General Assembly on the prevention and control of NCDs places such singular emphasis on prevention. This on its own will not solve the issue of NCDs. It overlooks the need for detection and treatment which may in turn require anaesthesia and surgery. Diagnosis and treatment represent critical parts of a strategy for successfully addressing NCDs, alongside prevention.
Virtually all NCDs will require a surgical intervention over the life-course. Thus health systems must be able to provide safe and affordable anaesthesia and surgery, alongside safe and affordable pain management, in order to achieve Universal Health Coverage.
Prevention is paramount, but can only be part of any strategy to combat NCDs. We call on the World Health Assembly to continue to raise the priority accorded to the appropriate diagnosis and treatment of NCDs within global, regional and national policy. With the global epidemic of premature deaths from NCDs set to rise, it is essential that we have a comprehensive approach at this critical and defining moment.