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Healthy Caribbean Coalition

May 7th - May 12th 2019


HCC and Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) Childhood Obesity Project Highlights

The Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) joined forces with the HCC to tackle Childhood Obesity in the Caribbean, by providing a grant of USD150,000, to support capacity building to address childhood obesity prevention in four countries. The grant has helped civil society organisations (CSOs) in The Bahamas, Barbados, Belize and Jamaica to contribute to non-communicable disease (NCD) prevention and control, with specific focus on childhood obesity programmes.

See project highlights from each of the beneficiaries:

Webinar: The Road to, and Beyond, the UN High Level Meetings on NCDs: The Caribbean Civil Society Perspective - Sir Trevor Hassell, HCC President

ECHORN Webinar
Wednesday May 29, 12:00-1:00pm AST
This free webinar from ECHORN and Yale-TCC is part of a series focusing on nutrition and NCDs in the Caribbean. Sir Trevor Hassell, president of the Healthy Caribbean Coalition, will share the roles and contributions of Caribbean countries and the Healthy Caribbean Coalition to the UN High Level Meeting on non-communicable diseases (NCDs). He will discuss future multisectoral approaches, conducted in partnership with policyholders and national governments, designed to meet sustainable development goals by the year 2030. He will also discuss lessons learned and areas for further study.

Certificates of attendance available upon request. For questions please email:

HCC Childhood Obesity Prevention Webinar Series

First Webinar Recording and Presentation Slides now available
Childhood Obesity: Time For A New Narrative - Webinar recording
Childhood Obesity: Time For A New Narrative - Webinar recording
On April 25th, 2019 the Healthy Caribbean Coalition, with the support of the UWI Open Campus and Sagicor, kicked off its childhood obesity webinar series in support of the of the Civil Society Action Plan 2017-2021: Preventing Childhood Obesity in the Caribbean.
Read more
The next webinar in the series will be on Thursday May 30th.
If you have any questions or for more information, contact

Saint Lucia Steps Up Efforts to Stop Tobacco Use

Saint Lucia Steps Up Efforts to Stop Tobacco Use
(Photo: Courtesy St Lucia Times)
St Lucia Times: As World No Tobacco Day approaches, global partners are bringing attention to the harmful and deadly effects of tobacco use and second-hand smoke exposure, while seeking to discourage the use of tobacco in any form.

The tobacco epidemic is one of the biggest public health threats the world has ever faced, killing more than 7 million people a year. More than 6 million of those deaths are the result of direct tobacco use while around 890, 000 are the result of non-smokers being exposed to second-hand smoke.
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World No Tobacco Day 2019

May 31, World No Tobacco Day 2019: Tobacco and Lung Health

WHO: The focus of World No Tobacco Day 2019 is on "tobacco and lung health." The campaign will increase awareness on: the negative impact that tobacco has on people’s lung health, from cancer to chronic respiratory disease, the fundamental role lungs play for the health and well-being of all people. The campaign also serves as a call to action, advocating for effective policies to reduce tobacco consumption and engaging stakeholders across multiple sectors in the fight for tobacco control.
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Petersfield Primary Jamaica Moves Club Promoting Healthy Lifestyle Choices

Petersfield Primary Jamaica Moves Club Promoting Healthy Lifestyle Choices
Students of Petersfield Primary School in Westmoreland engage in an exercise session on National School Moves Day, which was observed in institutions across the island recently (Photo: JIS Contributed)
JIS: The Petersfield Primary School ‘Jamaica Moves’ club is making strides in promoting healthy lifestyle habits among staff and students.

Coordinator of the club, Crystal-Gaye Scott, told JIS News that the Westmoreland-based institution has stopped the sale of sugary drinks on the compound.

“Our school is sugar-free; we no longer sell juices. The only fluid our students will get is water,” she said, while encouraging parents to adhere to the measure.

“We also have fruit days for students. On these days only fruits are sold and the students enjoy it,” she added.
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PAHO Director Advocates for More Prevention and Promotion of NCDs During Visit to St. Lucia

PAHO Director Dr. Carissa Etienne
Prime Minister of St Lucia, Allen Chastanet and PAHO Director Dr. Carissa Etienne (Photo: PAHO)
The Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO) Director Dr. Carissa Etienne recently paid an official visit to Saint Lucia. During her visit to Saint Lucia, Dr. Etienne got the opportunity to meet with health and other high-level officials to discuss ways of strengthening PAHO’s technical cooperation in the areas of environmental health and universal health care, to name a few.

Dr. Etienne says she is committed to working with Saint Lucia to provide assistance aimed at improving the health and quality of life for citizens.

“Certainly, going forward, I would like the health sector to ensure a much more prevention and promotion, particularly for the chronic diseases and non-communicable diseases because this is the only way to reduce cost, this is the only way to save lives and so I would like to see that. As well, your government is contemplating a significant reform in health and more so in financing and strengthening the first level of care as well, so I would like to see that because one of our major goals is ensuring access to health for all.”

The Director of PAHO also addressed the impact of non-communicable diseases and risk factors specific to Saint Lucia. She highlighted some effective policy interventions to promote healthy living including the taxation of sugar-sweetened beverages, front-of-package labelling and restriction of marketing to children.  “You have the opportunity to enact legislation that makes the healthier choice, the easier choice, protecting the lives of not only present but also future generations,” she said.  

Related Media

Study Uncovers How Coca-Cola Influences Science Research

Coca-Cola funds health research at universities. But a new study shows this spending has a dark side (Photo: Shutterstock)
Discover: Coca-Cola has poured millions of dollars into scientific research at universities. But if the beverage giant doesn’t like what scientists find, the company has the power to make sure that their research never sees the light of day.

That’s according to an analysis published in the Journal of Public Health Policy that explains how Coca-Cola uses contract agreements to influence the public health research it financially supports.
Read more
Related Media:

NOURISHING Policy Database Has Been Updated

NOURISHING Policy Database Has Been Updated
World Cancer Research Fund International's NOURISHING policy database has been updated and now contains over 530 policies and 120 policy evaluations from more than 130 countries.

Some highlights from this update include: Belgium adopting the NutriScore front-of-pack label and Uruguay adopting warning labels with Peru looking set to come next. Morocco and Qatar have implemented an SSB tax and Bermuda has increased their SSB tax to 75 per cent! Canada’s new dietary guidelines were applauded around the globe as was London’s restrictions on ‘junk food’ advertising on all public transport. Jamaica has introduced mandatory standards for food available in schools including restrictions on unhealthy foods and India has new regulations on misleading food advertising. We have also added Peru and Thailand's trans-fat bans.

Send any policy actions or policy evaluations missing from the database to
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As Alcohol Use Is Projected to Keep Rising, Countries Fall Short of Their Promise to Protect Their People

As Alcohol Use Is Projected to Keep Rising, Countries Fall Short of Their Promise to Protect Their People
IOGT: A new study projects rising alcohol consumption over the next decade. The latest findings indicate that the goals for reducing alcohol harm will remain out of reach. IOGT International emphasizes the severity of this trend and calls for urgent action. 

The new study published in The Lancet medical journal shows with the most up-to-date data and compelling graphs that adult per capita alcohol consumption has steadily increased over the last two decades and will keep rising in the coming decade. This trend runs counter to political promises made by countries to reduce alcohol use by 10% until 2025.
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The Eastern Caribbean Health Outcomes Research Network (Echorn) Team Has Been Chosen for the Team Science Award by the Association for Clinical and Translational Science (Acts)

Marcella Nunez-Smith
The Eastern Caribbean Health Outcomes Research Network (ECHORN) team has been chosen for the Team Science Award by the Association for Clinical and Translational Science (ACTS). ECHORN is led by Marcella Nunez-Smith, MD, MHS, Yale University; Cruz Nazario, PhD, University of Puerto Rico; Maxine Nunez, RN, DPH, University of the Virgin Islands; Peter Adams, BSc, MBBS, DM, University of the West Indies, Barbados; and Rohan Maharaj, BSc, MB, BS, MHSc, DM, FCCFP, University of the West Indies, Trinidad & Tobago.
At a recently held ceremony in Washington, D.C., USA, Marcella Nunez-Smith (pictured above) accepted the award on behalf of the ECHORN team. This award was established by ACTS to acknowledge and catalyze the growing importance of interdisciplinary teams to the translation of research discoveries into clinical applications and widespread practice. ECHORN, a first-of-its-kind collaborative research and implementation network in the region, has substantially strengthened regional capacity for high-quality research and has developed novel pathways for implementation through health policy and community partnership.

The team includes five primary academic institutions and more than 70 health researchers, research staff, and stakeholders/community leaders, representing 35 organizations in the U.S. and Eastern Caribbean. By translating research discoveries into real world applications, including clinical practice and health policy, the group is helping to address disease disparities for millions of adults across the Eastern Caribbean region, New York, and New Jersey with non-communicable diseases including cancer, diabetes, and heart disease. Combining non-communicable disease surveillance, research, intervention, and policy change, along with the principles of community participation, the ECHORN team is making an ongoing positive impact throughout the region.

Fox Chase Cancer Center Researcher Extends Cancer Control Collaborations Into the Caribbean

Camille Ragin
For more than a decade, Camille Ragin, PhD, MPH, (pictured right) associate professor in the Cancer Prevention and Control Program at Fox Chase Cancer Center, has been working to eliminate cancer disparities among people of African ancestry. The first step is understanding the problem.

With support from the National Cancer Institute, Ragin and colleagues are building a cancer research infrastructure in the Caribbean to prepare the region to reduce its cancer burden.
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Obesity News From Across the Globe

Obesity Is Increasing More Rapidly in the World’s Rural Areas
Photo: Imperial College London

Obesity Is Increasing More Rapidly in the World’s Rural Areas

Imperial College London: The research, led by Imperial College London and published in Nature, analysed the height and weight data of more than 112 million adults across urban and rural areas of 200 countries and territories between 1985 and 2017. Read more
Is Your Income Too Low?
Photo: Economic Times

Is Your Income Too Low? Experts Reveal How It Could Result in Obesity?

Economic Times: People with lower incomes may be more likely to have obesity as a result of psychological distress that gives rise to emotional eating, recent findings suggest.

The findings were published in the Journal of Obesity. Read more
Obesity and Depression
Photo: The Independent

Obesity and Depression ‘Linked Due to Dietary Fats Entering Brain'

The Independent: New research led by the University of Glasgow has found that the connection might be down to dietary fats entering the brain through the bloodstream, which can then accumulate and affect neurological signals related to depression. Read more
Expand Sugar Tax
Photo: Getty Images

Expand Sugar Tax Says MP Paul Williams As Obesity Related Admission Rates Are Revealed

Northern Echo: Taxing milkshakes and chocolate while banning the marketing of junk food after 9pm could help tackle the obesity crisis, according to a North-East MP. Read more
Childhood Obesity Prevention Scorecard

The American Heart Association Institute for Precision Cardiovascular Medicine Data Grant Portfolio

Closing Date for Applications 30th July 2019
AHA Grants
Grants are open to applicants outside the U.S., Training Grant applicants must hold at least a bachelor’s degree, Clinical Training Grants are for recent medical school graduates. Fields of study using bioinformatics, code development, and scientific community development are welcome.
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New Funding Opportunity from the LINKS Initiative

LINKS initiative
 Photo: Links Global Community
A New funding opportunity from the LINKS initiative is now available. Led by Resolve to Save Lives, for those interested and working on cardiovascular disease prevention. Grants awarded this year are focused on managing high blood pressure, reducing salt intake and eliminating trans fats.

On Thursday May 9, 2019 from 9:00am-10:00am ET, there is an information session to review the criteria for submitting an application and provide a brief opportunity for members to ask questions about their application. Registration is required –  please register here.
If you are unable to attend this session, you may email your questions to A recording will of the session will be posted to the LINKS website.
In order to access the grant website you need to become members of LINKS, which you can be easily done here:
The new call for applications ends in 15 June 2019.
Read more

Please Help to Monitor the Health of Caribbean Schools

My Healthy Caribbean School (MHCS) is an initiative of the HCC which provides students, teachers and parents with the opportunity to monitor the school environment with a focus on nutrition and physical activity.
Find out more
Key Messages From Our Publications
Sodium Adds up
Sodium Adds up
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The NCD Alliance


In this edition:
  • Civil society calls on leaders to ensure health for all
  • Blog - Antibiotic resistance is a major threat to global health
  • WHO Walk the Talk: the Health for All Challenge 2019
  • NCDA pre-WHA72 webinar Wednesday 8 May: REGISTER!
  • NCDA side event at WHA72: rethinking global health
  • NCDA advocacy briefing for NGOs
  • Digital health and NCDs: take part in our survey
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Forthcoming Events


Belize Cancer Society Annual Cancer Walk 2019

Saturday May 25, 2019
Belize Cancer Society Annual Cancer Walk 2019
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Jamaica Cancer Society Relay for Life

Jamaica Cancer Society Relay for Life
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The Trinidad and Tobago Heart Foundation Go Red for Women High Tea and Fashion Show

The Go Red campaign reminds women of the need to protect their heart health, inspiring them to make a change because 1 in 3 women, worldwide, will die from heart disease – unnecessarily. Join the TTHF for an inspiring evening to raise awareness for women's heart health! Sunday 9th June 2019 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, tickets are available now! Cost: $350.00.
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CARPHA Health Research Conference - Primary Health Care : Current and Future Models for the Caribbean

CARPHA Conference
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Cancer Support Services Annual Conference

Cancer Support Services Annual Conference
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Heart & Stroke Foundation of Barbados Heart of a Woman Symposium and Trade Show

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Our Publications
CTA Beyond the Call to Action
CTA Beyond the Call to Action –  Towards School Policies in Support of Childhood Obesity Prevention
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Childhood Obesity Prevention Obesity Fact Sheets
Childhood Obesity Prevention Obesity Fact Sheets – intended to serve as tools to support civil society advocacy 
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See All HCC Publications
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HCC News Roundup Archive - If you have missed any of our News Roundups you can view previous Roundups on our News Roundup Archive webpage here.
The HCC is a regional network of Caribbean health NGOs and civil society organizations with the remit to combat chronic diseases (NCDs) and their associated risk factors and conditions. Our membership presently consists of more than 65 Caribbean-based health NGOs and over 55 not-for-profit organisations and, in excess of 200 individual members based in the Caribbean and across the globe.

To join the HCC email us at
The work of HCC would not be possible without core funding from Sagicor Life Inc
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The HCC promote the work of civil society throughout the Caribbean in a variety of ways including sharing of their materials, this is not an endorsement of their materials or messages. The information contained in this newsletter is for general information purposes only, we endeavour to keep the information up to date and correct but any reliance you place on such information is strictly at your own risk. Through this newsletter you are able to link to other websites which are not under the control of the HCC. We have no control over the nature, content and availability of those sites. The inclusion of any links does not necessarily imply a recommendation or endorse the views expressed within them.
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