15 Jul 2013

SPC Director calls for more attention to spread of disease

3:50 pm on 15 July 2013

The Director-General of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community says more attention should be given to diseases which have worse effects than climate change and disasters.

Dr Jimmie Rodgers says while the region is the most vulnerable in the world to disasters, the bigger killers are non-communicable diseases.

He says based on the current statistics, roughly one million Pacific people will die over the next ten years from NCDs like diabetes.

"Neither climate change nor natural disasters is going to kill one million Pacific islanders in ten years, NCDs will. And yet NCD doesn't have any attention, or not much attention, so to the extent that you might say in a hundred years' time, which is the forecast given to us under the IPCC on changes on climate change, potentially we'll lose ten million people which is the current population of the Pacific."

Dr Jimmie Rodgers.