The initiative, which was coordinated with the support of local telecommunications companies, was managed by the Healthy Caribbean Coalition.
During the past week residents in St. Kitts & Nevis joined thousands across the Caribbean in the ‘text to eradicate the existence of NCDs’ campaign.
It was part of an international petition project to encourage world support for new policies and programs that would address the need to give more priority to the fight against NCDs.
Persons willing to support the movement through the internet were encouraged to log on to Facebook at www.facebook.com/getthemessage and click ‘Like’ to join the page. They were also allowed to Text ‘YES’ to 4325 (Digicel) and 4357 (Lime).
The petition is to be submitted to the first ever United Nations Summit on NCDs to be held in New York in September 2011. The aim of this movement is to show the need for greater awareness and management of chronic diseases in the Caribbean
The Summit was requested by CARICOM Heads of Government and it is hoped that the petition of text messages will encourage world leaders to increase attention and funding to the global prevention and management of NCDs.
Non- communicable Chronic Diseases are medical conditions such as hypertension, diabetes, heart disease, stroke and certain cancers. While NCDs account for 60 percent of deaths globally and in the Americas, the Caribbean is the region that is most affected.
The target was to get a minimum of one million text messages during the program.