Healthy Caribbean Conference

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October 7, 2008 NEWS RELEASE NO. 24/08-G CDB Supports Healthy Caribbean 2008 ConferenceThe Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) is co-sponsoring the Healthy Caribbean 2008 Conference with a grant of USD145,000. The conference is aimed at mobilising civil society, and will bring together a wide cross section of the Caribbean community to address chronic non-communicable disease in a highly participatory and interactive workshop format. Chronic non-communicable diseases, comprising heart disease, hypertension, and stroke, diabetes, lung disease and some cancers, are the number one cause of premature death and reduced quality of life in the Caribbean. The underlying risk conditions for these diseases are physical inactivity, poor diet and tobacco exposure. Inadequate treatment and control of diabetes and hypertension contributes to the ill health and premature death caused by the chronic diseases.The Pan American Health Organization, the InterAmerican Heart Foundation and the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Barbados have organised this conference with the objective of changing the course of this epidemic.International and regional leaders in the field of chronic disease prevention and treatment will attend the conference. Among the principal outcomes of the conference will be a preliminary Caribbean Civil Society plan to tackle chronic diseases over the next 2 - 5 years, with specific attention aimed at improved identification and treatment of diseases such as diabetes and hypertension throughout the Caribbean, and enhanced lifestyle. The conference is to be held at the Accra Beach Hotel and Resort from October 16 - 18. Highlights of the conference will include the delivery of the InterAmerican Heart Foundation Science of Peace Lecture and the presentation of the Science of Peace Award to Sir George Alleyne, Chancellor of the University of the West Indies, and the presentation of the Fifth InterAmerican Journalism Contest Awards on Tobacco Control.This conference follows the action of Heads of Government of the Caribbean Community who met on 15th September, 2007, and issued the "Declaration of Port of Spain; Uniting to stop the epidemic of Chronic Non-Communicable Diseases". A media launch for the Healthy Caribbean 2008 Conference will be held in the CDB Conference Centre on Wednesday, October 8, at 10:00 a.m.

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