GD & Associates
(New York – 13, June 2014) The Congo Mission to the United Nations made a bold move in the drafting of resolution WHA59.20 and presenting it to the Assembly of the African Union to recognize sickle cell anemia as one of the world’s most prominent genetic disorders and a serious public health concern. The African Union (AU) adopted the resolution in its 5th Session on July 5, 2005 in Sirte, Libya, then by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organizations on October 19 of the same year. The Congolese resolution was co-sponsored by Brazil, Cuba and Slovenia. Further support was given by Angola, Austria, Belgium, Benin, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Comoros, Congo, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, France, Gabon, Ghana, Monaco, Senegal, Togo and Zambia then was presented to the General Assembly at the UN. On December 22, 2008, the 63rd Session of the General Assembly adopted resolution A/63/.63 and passed it to the Economic and Social Committee for implementation.
The General Assembly recognizes that the homozygous form hemoglobin SS (sickle cell anemia) is the most common type of sickle cell disease worldwide and the most deadly. Education, information and communication technologies should play a crucial role in preventing sickle cell anemia and there is an urgent need to create effective research and training programs to successfully decrease the incidence of sickle cell disease in countries most affected by this debilitative and life threatening condition.
The UN General Assembly;
1. Recognizes that sickle-cell anemia is a public health problem;
2. Underlines the need to raise public awareness about sickle-cell anemia and to eliminate harmful prejudices associated with the disease;
3. Urges Member States and the organizations of the United Nations system to raise awareness of sickle-cell anemia on June 19, each year at the national and international levels;
4. Encourages Member States, as well as United Nations agencies, funds and programs, international institutions and development partners, to support health systems and primary health-care delivery, including efforts to improve the management of sickle-cell anemia; Ordinary Session of the General Assembly adopted resolution A/
5. Invites Member States, international organizations and civil society to support the efforts being made to combat sickle-cell anemia, including as part of health-system strengthening efforts, in the various development programs, and to encourage basic and applied research on the disease;
6. Urges the Member States in which sickle-cell anemia is a public health problem to establish national programs and specialized centers for the treatment of sickle-cell anemia and to facilitate access to treatment;
7. Requests the Secretary-General to bring the present resolution to the attention of all Member States and organizations of the United Nations system.
The Sickle Cell/Thalassemia Patients Network, the oldest and largest community-based charitable organization in New York in partnership with Brookdale University Medical Center, Department of Pediatrics will host a public forum for World Sickle Cell Day at Brooklyn Borough Hall in the Rotunda, from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm. Kusum Viswanathan, M.D., Chair of the Department of Pediatrics and Director of the Comprehensive Sickle Cell Program at Brookdale will be the keynote speaker. World Sickle Cell Day’s goal is to bring much needed attention to the existence of sickle cell trait, the impact of sickle cell disease, and to begin unifying the sickle cell community worldwide.
For more information visit the SCTPN website at: http://www.SCTPNWalk.net or call (347) 533-8485.