Trinidad and Tobago
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Health Ministry to tackle fast food advertising

Paula Lindo Minister of Health Terrence Deyalsingh -
Minister of Health Terrence Deyalsingh -

As the Health Ministry continues to fight the high incidence of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) in TT, Health Minister Terrence Deyalsingh is taking aim at advertisers of fast food.

In a release, the ministry said Deyalsingh was speaking at the 76th World Health Assembly in Geneva, Switzerland on Sunday.

He said there needed to be targeted approaches to address marketing strategies by multinational corporations which encourage increased consumption of fast food by teens and adolescents. He said these approaches should be robust to prevent an explosive increase in the rate of NCDs.

While delivering TT’s national statement, Deyalsingh said the unrepressed expansion of NCDs poses devastating global health consequences for individuals, families and communities, and threatens to overwhelm health systems around the world.

The ministry said TT is one of the 28 front-runner countries set to receive support from the World Health Organisation (WHO) to implement strategies aimed at prevention and management of NCDs.

Other issues addressed by Deyalsingh included the issue of childhood vaccinations, including poliomyelitis.

During his visit, Deyalsingh met with WHO director-general Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus and presented him with a letter of invitation from the Prime Minister to visit TT at his earliest convenience.

The Assembly also discussed the importance of the global pandemic accord, particularly for small island developing states such as TT, and the need for heightened collaboration and resource-sharing among countries in the context of post covid19 recovery.

The Assembly took place from May 21 to 30, with Deyalsingh leading a delegation which included county medical officer of health Dr Jeanine St. Bernard and officials of the permanent mission of TT to the United Nations, Geneva.