Noncommunicable diseases: Campaign for action – meeting the NCD targets

About the campaign

Group of children doing exercise together.
Increased physical activity will support global efforts to beat NCDs.

Noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) – mainly cardiovascular diseases, cancers, chronic respiratory diseases, and diabetes – are the leading cause of death worldwide. More than 38 million people die annually from NCDs (63% of global deaths), including 16 million people who die before the age of 70. Nearly 50% of global disability is attributed to NCDs.

Reducing the avoidable burden caused by NCDs and their risk factors means taking actions now to change the narrative around NCDs. Without dedicated efforts by policymakers, achieving the nine voluntary global NCD targets by 2025 as part of realizing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030 will not be possible. Fortunately, very cost-effective, evidence-based interventions exist.

Campaign overview

This campaign aims to demonstrate the potential that exists for countries, and the world, to achieve the nine global voluntary NCD targets, the overall objective of which is to reduce premature deaths from cancers, heart and lung diseases, and diabetes by 25% by 2025.

The recent adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development provides important context for the campaign, highlighting the interdependence of NCDs, their impact beyond health and across all SDGs and the need to adopt an integrated, lifecourse approach to prevention and control.

As part of this effort, the campaign explains clearly the measures that can be taken to achieve the NCD targets and raise awareness on what can be done to protect people from the risks that contribute to these conditions, including tobacco use, harmful use of alcohol, unhealthy diet and physical activity.

Showing how effective, affordable measures can be implemented in countries to improve health and protect against NCDs is central to this campaign.

Elements of the campaign

Through this campaign, policymakers and the general public are provided with:

  • WHO guidelines and technical information on the prevention and control of NCDs and their risk factors;
  • policy briefs, key messages, graphic materials and other products for use by policymakers and the public to support advocacy and the implementation of the elements of the campaign at the regional, national, and local levels;
  • country implementation profiles, with information on current country progress to achieve the NCD targets; and
  • NCDs&Me: a portal to engage directly with people to show the human face of NCDs.

All content within the campaign will build upon WHO’s ongoing work and be guided by agreed WHO policies and recommendations that are credible, trustworthy, understandable, relevant, timely, accessible, and actionable. The campaign will be linked to and reflect themes and content cutting across related WHO programmatic areas, initiatives and campaigns.


The campaign is being implemented during the second half of 2016 and will continue to evolve as part of the lead-up to the 2018 UN General Assembly High-level Review on NCDs.

NCDs & Me

How are you affected by noncommunicable diseases?

Take a stand

Make your voice heard.

Get involved

Feeling inspired? Start your own national or local campaign to raise awareness among the general public on the impact of noncommunicable diseases, their cost, and the actions that can be taken now to beat NCDs.