WHO EURO 2014: Statement on Child and Adolescent Health

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World Health Organization
 64th Session of the Regional Committee for Europe
 September 15th - September 18th 2014 | Copenhagen, Denmark

Statement of International Federation of Medical Students’ Associations on Agenda Item 5: Investing in Children - The European child and adolescent health strategy 2015–2020o Dear Chairman, On behalf of the International Federation of Medical Students’ Associations, we welcome the strategy and especially the suggested life course approach. A life course approach will have a long term effect in the region considering nearly two-thirds of premature deaths and one-third of the total disease burden in adults are associated with conditions or behaviours that began in their youth. Issues like unemployment rates among youth, mental health, NCDs, education and migration are among the current challenges we are facing in Europe. These challenges are interrelated and require a holistic, cross-cutting and multisectoral approach that would enable social change Furthermore, youth face barriers to accessing health care services and are vulnerable to a unique set of health risks. It remains critical to ensure an effective response that addresses the specific needs and realities of young people. Youth organizations are poised to address these barriers. Most importantly, youth bring a unique and creative perspective. True engagement of young people will encourage intergenerational dialogue and accelerate the progress from strategy to action on a regional and national level. We would also like to highlight the persistent inequities in the region in child and adolescent health such as the 25 fold difference in child mortality between countries within the European region. We therefore urge member states to: • Engage young people when addressing the health of young people • Address the health inequities that continue to face children and adolescents in Europe.

 Alberto Silva
 IFMSA Regional Coordinator for Europe
 rceurope@ifmsa.org | www.ifmsa.org

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