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Stephen Morrison discusses global health, noncommunicable diseases

Stephen Morrison

Senior Vice President, Center for Strategic & International Studies, and Director, CSIS Global Health Policy Center

We know a lot more today than we did before as to the salt, fat, sugar dimensions of foods, and we know a lot more about the way that beverages and food can be reformulated to make them healthier. But we don’t yet have a very good game plan for pushing that dialogue forward.

The low-income countries highlighted in the World Health Organization report as experiencing the NCDs in a very profound and new way are not going to have the wherewithal in terms of finances and expertise to address these problems in the same way that emerging markets are able to. There has to be some multilateral fix.

The reality is that this is not 10 years ago [when the UN took on AIDS/HIV]. This is not a magic moment in which you have a very small number of key interventions that need to be financed and a powerful social movement coming forward and lots of money that has been building up over a 10- or 15-year period.

[Today] you have a much more fragmented set of interventions and interest groups. You do not have the same powerful, coherent social movement. You have an age of austerity. And so I think the changes are going to happen more slowly.

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