Introduction to the SAG Area

The NCD SAG addresses non-communicable diseases and their risk factors. Many of the risk factors for preventable diseases begin in childhood & adolescence. These riosk factors include: tobacco use and secondhand smoke exposure; malnutrition & obesity (unhealthy diet, inactivity); toxic stress and mental health; harmful use of alcohol or other drugs.

Millions of children and adolescents live with or are at risk for non-communicable diseases (NCDs) including cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease, mental health, injuries, and other special health care needs. Children in low and middle-income countries often die because of late diagnosis or lack of access to adequate treatment, or suffer long-term disabilities from chronic conditions not adequately managed.

IPA recognizes that children and adolescents need access to care, access to medicines and technology and service systems different from those for adults. Addressing NCDs and maximizing healthy life requires prevention, including adequate vaccination, healthy nutrition in childhood, protection from tobacco and secondhand smoke exposure, and support of healthy pregnancies and early childhood brain development. A child-rights based life-course approach to prevention and treatment for all children, adolescents and families is needed for NCDs. Coordination and integration with a strong, universal Maternal and Child Health system is essential to achieve both the NCD agenda, and to achieve the Sustainable Developmental Goals.

SAG Lead and Committee


  • Jonathan Klein, Lead/Chair, USA
  • David Githanga, Kenya
  • Mychelle Farmer, USA
  • Ignacio Vazquez Leon, Mexico
  • Aman Pulungam, Indonesia
  • Jenny Proimos, Australia

NCD Child resource partners:

  • Jen Bois, Canada*
  • Marie Hauerslev, Denmark*
  • Felicia Knaul, USA
  • George Msengi, Tanzania*
  • Jamal Raza, Pakistan
  • Alafia Samuels, Barbados

Note: NCD Child is a global advocacy coalition addressing children and youth NCD prevention and treatment issues. Resource partners include non-pediatrician NCD Child Board members working in partnership with IPA leaders on NCD advocacy activities.

*= youth members of NCD Child governing council

History within IPA

The NCD SAG started as an NCD Technical Advisory Group in 2011, and grew out of a focused effort by IPA on child health and tobacco control. In partnership with NCD Child, other CSOs and UNICEF, the SAG has

  • hosted and participated in advocacy side-events at the WHO World Health Assembly, UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), and the UN General Assembly.
  • Convened NCD Champions advocacy training workshops at regional pediatric society and global IPA meetings, with ~45-50 pediatric societies reached between 2015-17
  • Participated in the WHO Global Coordinating Mechanism (GCM) on NCDs, helped lead the NCD GCM On-line “next generation” community of practice, participated in regional and on-line consultations and meetings, engaged with the NCD Alliance, PMNCH and the UN Major Groups on Health working groups, and supported youth led and youth serving advocacy calls to action.
Future Plan of Action

The NCD SAG 2017-2019 Plan of Action includes:

Engage with strategic partners to provide pediatric input

  • Continue partnership with NCD Child on global advocacy events
  • Include NCDs and children in IPA WHO work-plan
  • Participation in WHO Global Coordinating Mechanism for NCDs

Advocacy and testimony/statements towards broadening WHO definition of NCDs

  • Include children and youth in 2018 HLM outcome statement
  • Integrate NCD and children in universal health care and health systems strengthening
  • renew focus on tobacco control

Develop practical tools and technical assistance to national pediatric societies to promote inclusion of prevention and treatment of children with NCDs

  • Workshops and symposia for regional meetings and the Panama IPA Congress
  • Develop powerpoint/tools for national leaders to support NCD inclusion discussions
  • Technical support for IPA member societies
  • advocacy for inclusion of children and youth in country NCD plans
  • educational programs for clinical and community pediatric NCD prevention