70th World Health Assembly: GAIN & partners host key events on iodine deficiency and adolescent nutrition

The 70th World Health Assembly is taking place in Geneva from 22 to 31 May. On this occasion, GAIN is hosting a series of events focused on two critical themes: eliminating iodine deficiency disorders through salt iodization and improving adolescent nutrition.

Towards the Elimination of Iodine Deficiency by 2020


Iodine deficiency is the world’s most prevalent, yet easily preventable, cause of brain damage. Iodine deficiency disorders (IDD), represent a serious threat to children’s mental health and often their very survival. Universal salt iodization – the practise of adding iodine to salt – is the most cost effective way to tackle iodine deficiency disorders.

Today we are on the verge of eliminating iodine deficiency – an achievement that will be hailed as a major public health triumph that ranks with getting rid of smallpox and poliomyelitis.

To celebrate success and explore future opportunities, GAIN together with the World Health Organization (WHO), the Iodine Global Network (IGN), the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) and Effective Altruism Geneva is organizing the event ‘Towards the Elimination of Iodine Deficiency by 2020’ on Tuesday, 23 May 2017 from 18:30 at Impact Hub, Geneva.

Speakers include:

  • Michael Zimmerman, MD, Chair, Iodine Global Network (IGN)
  • Jessica Farebrother, MPharm MPH – doctoral candidate, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) Zurich
  • Dr Francesco Branca, Director of the Department of Nutrition for Health and Development, World Health Organization (WHO)
  • Jonas Vollmer, Director of Communications, Effective Altruism Foundation

RSVP by Monday, 22 May 2017 here


Accelerated Action for the Health of Adolescents (AA-HA!) A Never Before Moment for countries to ACT NOW

Investment in adolescent health is key not only to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, but also to allow future societies to grow and thrive; yet more than 3000 adolescents die every day. To address the issue and work towards a solution UN Agencies have now come together providing guidance on how to improve adolescent health.

GAIN, together with the WHO, is co-hosting the event ‘Accelerated Action for the Health of Adolescents (AA-HA!) A Never Before Moment for countries to ACT NOW’, which will be held on Thursday, 25 May from 18:00 at the Club Suisse de la Presse.

The engaging youth-led discussion will focus on:

  • Stimulating action on adolescent health
  • Lessons learned from country experiences in advancing intersectoral action for adolescent health
  • How to accelerate commitments to adolescent health

Lawrence Haddad, GAIN’s Executive Director, will join the panel discussion.

RSVP by Monday, 22 May here


Embodying the future: How to improve the nutrition status of adolescents?



To further highlight the need for all stakeholders to make improving nutrition of adolescents a priority, GAIN together with the Government of the Netherlands and the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare of the Government of Bangladesh, is organizing the official WHA70 side event Embodying the future: How to improve the nutrition status of adolescents? on Tuesday, 30 May 2017 from 18:00 to 19:30 in Room IX of the Palais des Nations in Geneva.

Speakers include:

  • Dr Lawrence Haddad, Executive Director, Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN)
  • Ms Roxana Quader, Additional Secretary, Health Service Division, Ministry of Health and Family Planning, Bangladesh
  • Dr. Slamet, MHP, Ministry of Health, Indonesia
  • Ir. Doddy Izwardy, Director of Community Nutrition, Ministry of Health, Indonesia
  • Dr Valentina Baltag, Adolescent Health Expert, Department of Maternal, Newborn, Child and Adolescent Health, WHO

Please note that participation is limited to delegates attending the 70th
World Health Assembly.

Please RSVP here

For any information regarding these events please contact Beatrice Montesi, bmontesi@gainhealth.org

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Published 19 May 2017