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Minister of State Cannon T.D. remarks at High Level meeting on Non-Communicable Diseases

Ireland’s International Development policy includes strong commitments to Health. Ireland’s engagement in Health has focused on building stronger health systems, supporting immunisation and prioritising human resources for health. These are all elements of a more robust health system better equipped to tackle the challenges posed by Non Communicable Diseases.

Recognising the importance of improving population health domestically, Healthy Ireland, a Framework for Improved Health and Wellbeing, 2013-2025, was launched by the Irish Government in 2013. Healthy Ireland seeks to tackle the major lifestyle issues which lead to negative health outcomes - including smoking, alcohol, poor diet, physical inactivity and obesity. It also seeks to address the wider social and environmental factors that impact on health and wellbeing, for example, housing, education, transport, and the physical environment.

Based on our experience at home, Ireland has been an enthusiastic supporter of the World Health Organization’s Global Action Plan on Physical Activity and HEPA (health-enhancing physical activity) Europe, through which leadership and guidance is provided for member states to increase participation in physical activity and thereby improve health and wellbeing globally.

Building on the work of the World Health Organisation European Healthy Cities Network, the National Healthy Cities and Counties Network of Ireland is developing a structure and supports for Healthy Ireland implementation at local level. The Network was officially launched in November 2016, and is working to recruit more Counties into the Network.

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