Summit participants include representatives from the food industry, agriculture, the Red Cross, and the Chamber of industry and commerce.
The meeting is designed to increase awareness of the diseases, mobilize civil society to address their increase and identify methods of reversing this trend, said the Ministry of Health, in a release.
The Summit which takes place at the Ocean Terrace Inn will include presentations by key facilitators pertaining to the effect of NCDs and civil society’s role in tackling them. The second part will see participants divided into groups that will thoroughly discuss priority actions that St. Kitts and Nevis as a country can take to address NCD’s and various factors.
Director of Community Health Services Dr. Hazel Williams-Roberts said that NCDs are those particular conditions that are not transmissible by any direct contact with other individuals.
“Usually those disorders have a genetic or biological factor, in other words it’s related to your family history,” Dr. Williams-Roberts stated. “And often sometimes, they are related to your lifestyle modifier – what we call lifestyle factor, in other words how you eat, your nutrition and whether you exercise or not.”
These illnesses include circulatory disease, asthma, heart disease and stroke, diabetes and hypertension.
Dr. Roberts explained that while the Summit will be of importance in mobilizing efforts toward stemming the increase of these illnesses which oftentimes is influenced by one’s lifestyle, the Federation’s National Action Plan will be presented at a global summit on NCDs.
“The global momentum on chronic non communicable diseases is definitely increasing and there is going to be a high level summit in Sept of this year,” Dr. Roberts revealed. “Governments internationally, are going to decide on priorities to be taken. Now on a country level we have been encouraged to have consultations so we can contribute our own country-specific actions and priorities to this higher level. So the local Summit on May 25 partly accomplishes that, although it targets specifically civil society and civil society organizations.”