Guyana Presidential Commission for the Prevention and Control of NCDs

by HCC
Status as at September 2023 Active
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Country Guyana
Name Presidential Commission for the Prevention and Control of NCDs
Status as at September 2023 Inactive
Date of establishment -
Date of first meeting September 2014 launch
Date of last meeting August, 2021. The NNCDC meets monthly.
Number of meetings over past 12 months The Commission plans to meet quarterly
Chairperson’s name Dr. Leslie S. Ramsammy
Title MP
Organisational affiliation -
Duration of tenure -
Legal authority/reference Presidential/Prime Ministerial/Cabinet decree.
Location(sector/entity) -
Mandate/Scope of work Advocacy, advise on policy / legislation / programmes, implementation of programmes, resource mobilization, monitoring and evaluation and research
Terms of reference Yes
Conflict of interest policy No
Code of ethics No
Standard operating procedures No
NNCDC strategic plan/plan of action
Duration of strategy of plan of action
Yes: Last plan 2013-2020. Present one 2020-2030 (Draft awaiting MOH approval)
Decision-making process (consensus, majority, other) Consensus
Membership and Personnel 23 commissioners, 1 secretary
Government sector membership and level of representation Ministries of Education, Youth Sports & Culture, Labour, human Services & Social Security, Local Government, Tourism, Industry & Commerce, Agriculture, Finance, and a representative from the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation




Foreign Affairs


Social services


Civil society membership and level of representation Trade Union, Consumer Protection Organizations, Professional Health Organisations, Health NGOs, University of Guyana, Canada-Guyana Medical Coalition, Guyana Faith-based Coalition. On rotation: Community-based organizations and Service Organizations

University of Guyana

Press Association

Red Cross

Guyana Medical Council

Guyana Diabetes Association

Private sector membership and level of representation Guyana Media Association

Private Sector Commission

International organizations PAHO/WHO, UNICEF (United Nations Children’s Fund) and UNFPA (United Nations Population Fund)
Ex officio members 4 Ex officio members
Secretariat exists? If so, please give date of establishment Yes
Resources A secretariat will be established to support the work of the NCD Commission. It will be based at the Ministry of Health and be responsible for the planning, implementation and reporting on the Commission’s Program of Work. It will prepare an annual budget and work program for the Commission’s approval and funding, through the Agency Budget of Health. The secretariat will employ the necessary staff, on approval of the Commission, through the Public Services Contractual programme.

The NNCDC procures its own resources from subvention from the National Budget
Full-time human resources/functions No
Part-time human resources/functions No
Main functions (advisory, accountability, strategic planning, project/programme implementation, other)

Providing advice to government on NCD legislation/policy/regulations/programmes


Programme development and implementation

Monitoring and evaluation

Promotion of research

Health promotion

Communicating for health

Resource mobilisation

Main areas of interventions for NCDs and NCD risk factors -
Other health issues that the NCD/Wellness Commission /Wellness Coordinating Mechanism addresses -
  • Is there integration – structural or functional, with other health-related Commissions, such as HIV Commissions?
  • If so, to what extent? Fully? To a large extent? To some extent?
Framework(s) of reference (national policy, strategy or plan; international plans/strategies) -
Focus of interventions (legislation, taxation, policy development, project/programme development, project/programme implementation, capacity building, surveillance, monitoring and evaluation, other) -
Work groups/subcommittees/task forces and their functions There will be sub-committees on different topics which can engage external experts if necessary
Accountability mechanisms (periodicity of monitoring, evaluation, reporting, and to whom; financial accountability mechanisms) Occurs every 2 years.
Minutes of meeting sent to Minister of Health and to President, quarterly report submitted to Minister of Health and Office of the President.
Main successes

Began a program to distribute glucometers to diabetic patients

National Communication on NCDs

CMEs on NDCs

Support Research - Adolescent Health

Work with MOE to regulate food vendors around school

Success factors -
  • Were there any successes due mainly to the participation of non-health sectors in the Commission?
  • If yes, please summarize, highlighting the role played by the non-health sector(s)
Main challenges

Lack of resources

Small staff

How were these challenges overcome? Specifically:
  • Did changes in administration disrupt the Commission’s functioning?
  • If yes, what were these changes and their effects?
  • If no, how was continuity of function maintained? What steps were taken?


Mobilize private sector support

Partnerships, technical cooperation (TC) – please summarize partners and relevant TC areas None
Main source(s) of funding and approximate percentage of funding from each source None
Indicative annual budget (USD) None
Resource mobilisation, main areas None
Mechanisms for sustainability None
Status as at December 2021 Active
Develop and implement a comprehensive mental health plan that complies with international human rights instruments,
includes allocated human and financial resources, and undergoes regular monitoring against indicators or targets for implementation
Decriminalize suicide, suicide attempts and other acts of self-harm Promoted/Currently Promoting:
  • Commission has advocated for the decriminalization of suicide attempts on numerous occasions. A suicide prevention bill which will seek amendments to the laws regarding suicide could be tabled in the National Assembly this year.
(November 2021)
Increase public awareness about mental health and how to stop discrimination through campaigns that involve
individuals living with mental disorders and psychosocial disabilities
Introduce brief interventions for hazardous substance use Promoted/Currently Promoting:
Advocate with other sectors such as housing, education, social welfare etc for the support of people with mental disorders
and psychosocial disabilities
Does the NNCDC structure include a position for a youth representative? -
Is the NNCDC connected to other organizations that prioritize youth engagement? -
Has the NNCDC utilized social media campaigns to target youth? -

Reduced affordability of tobacco products by increasing tobacco excise taxes and prices Promoted/Currently Promoting:
  • Recommendations were made to reintroduce estate duties and levies on tobacco and alcohol.
Protect people from tobacco smoke by creating, by law, implementing completely smoke-free environments in all indoor workplaces, public places, and public transport Promoted/Currently Promoting:
Warn individuals of the dangers of tobacco and tobacco smoke through effective health warnings and mass media campaigns Promoted/Currently Promoting:
  • National Tobacco Control Council created with aims of protecting non-smokers, especially children, from second and third-hand smoke and ensuring all sections of society are aware of the tobacco control laws and regulations
Implement and enforce bans on all forms of tobacco advertising, promotion, and sponsorship Promoted/Currently Promoting:
Ban the sale of tobacco to minors Promoted:
Support plain packaging and pictorial health warnings on cigarette packages Promoted:
Implement measures to minimize illicit trade in tobacco products -
Assess the usage and impact of e-cigarettes, and develop appropriate control measures if indicated, including through legislation and regulations for tobacco control Promoted:
  • Advocated and passed new Tobacco Control Act where electronic delivery systems are not to be sold at any health, education, sports, athletics or recreational, and government buildings.
Raise public awareness of physical inactivity through mass media public spaces and other programmes Promoted/Currently Promoted:
Develop population-based, age-specific guidelines on physical activity. -
Advocate for the design of public spaces that are supportive of physical activity. -
Reduce salt intake and salt content of food -
Replace trans fats with unsaturated fat -
Raise public awareness of unhealthy diet through mass media and other programmes
Place taxes on sugar sweetened beverages Promoted/Currently Promoting:
Implement nutritional labelling policies which promote consumption of healthier foods and beverages Promoted/Currently Promoting:
  • For World Salt Awareness Week March 8th-14th 2021, the Presidential Commission on the Prevention and Control of NCDs in Guyana strongly advocate for ‘front-of-pack” labelling as one tool to combat high salt diets.
Develop and implement school policies which restrict the availability of unhealthy foods and beverages within schools and their surroundings Promoted/Currently Promoting:
Raise excise taxes on alcoholic beverages -
Regulate commercial and public availability of alcohol -
Enforce restrictions or bans on alcohol promotion and advertising -
Collaborate with NGOs and Ministry of Transport to educate the public on the harmful use of alcohol -
Advocate for the introduction of breathalyser testing -
Improve housing conditions and ensure access to clean energy sources for indoor cooking, heating and lighting -
Create awareness and develop appropriate strategies to reduce exposure to second-hand tobacco smoke in households -
Phase out health-harmful subsidies for fossil fuels and polluting industries and introduce penalties for polluters and/or taxes on pollution -
Include air quality measures in urban, rural and transport planning at city, regional and national level, including measures to encourage modal shift and active mobility, noting the additional benefits to health, wellbeing, and reduction of health inequalities -
Adopt and strictly enforce emissions standards for all pollutants in all relevant sectors, including industry, energy, transport, waste, and agricultures -