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NCD Alliance response to COVID-19

18th March 2020

Given the evolving situation of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, it is becoming clear that people living with NCDs and older people are particularly vulnerable to COVID-19, and that health systems in rich and poor countries alike are ill-equipped to respond. We also know that COVID-19 does not discriminate and will exacerbate inequalities within societies, with vulnerable groups likely to suffer the most.

As a global alliance, the NCD Alliance (NCDA) will do everything within our capacity to raise our voices for the rights of people living with NCDs, older people and marginalised groups, and to share information, guidance and good practice to protect each other. In full solidarity and alignment with WHO, and in collaboration with our members, supporters and 65 national and regional NCD alliances, our contribution will be to provide an NCD lens to this fast moving health security challenge.

As an organisation, we want to reassure you that NCDA is implementing measures to protect our staff and adapt critical organisational activities to both support and respond to this fast-moving situation. We have moved all NCDA staff to work from home across our multiple geographies (London, Geneva, New York, Barcelona and Mexico City) and have suspended all in-person meetings and business travel until the middle of April (pending future review). Remote working has been an inherent part of our organisation since the outset, therefore we are well positioned to adjust our ways of working during this period.

In terms of our priorities and programmes for the year ahead, we are in consultation with our partners, members, and grantees to adapt our plans to better respond and give support during this global health crisis, while ensuring that we still deliver our strategic priorities.

With all conferences, events and in-person meetings being cancelled for the foreseeable future, we are revisiting our plans for events and convenings for at least the next few months, and planning virtual platforms that can support our shared goals.

The questions and challenges that NCDA is facing will be shared by many of our members and network. This global pandemic is forcing us all to work differently, drive advocacy and communications strategies differently, and deliver programmes and services differently. We are all likely grappling with similar questions. What are the best ways to share knowledge and good practice virtually? How can we advance our mission and priorities during these uncertain times? How can we add value and avoid duplication of efforts during this global and fast moving response? How can we ensure that services are reaching the most vulnerable?

Solidarity and unity will be critical during these difficult times; two principles that were the rationale for our alliance forming in 2009 and have continued to be in our DNA ever since. As ever, the power of NCDA is in our collective expertise and experience. We are therefore keen to share information, resources and good practice across our network during this outbreak, both in terms of the data and the response required, but also in how we as organisations and NGOs are adjusting and innovating our activities and programmes. 

Watch this space in the coming days for more information. We encourage you to share via this webform relevant resources and tools to help our network navigate this crisis. 

On behalf of all of us at NCDA, 

Todd Harper, NCD Alliance President

Katie Dain, NCD Alliance CEO