The World Health Organization (WHO) will present awards to President Maithripala Sirisena and Health Minister Dr. Rajitha Senaratne during the Global Conference on Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) organized by WHO in Montevideo, Uruguay from October 18 to 20 2017, Health Ministry sources said.
The sources said the President and the Health Minister will participate in the conference.
The former Health Services Director General Dr. Palitha Mahipala has informed about the conference and awards to the Health Minister.
Dr. Mahipala is the current Coordinator for Non Communicable Diseases (NCDs), Nutrition and Environmental Health at the WHO South East Asian regional office for 11 member countries in the region.
The WHO has identified Sri Lanka as the country in the region which has taken most successful actions to control NCDs. This is a significant achievement gained by Sri Lanka, the sources said.
The recent action taken by Sri Lanka to control NCDs such as increasing tax on tobacco, introducing 80 percent of pictorial warning for cigarette packets, banning tobacco cultivation by 2020, led the country to gain this opportunity.
Sri Lanka will soon ban selling of single cigarettes and selling cigarettes around a radius of 500 meters from a school, the sources added.