Framework Legislation for Non-Communicable Diseases: And for the Sustainable Development Goals?
BMJ Global Health, Vol. 2, No. 3, pp. 1-8, 2017
9 Pages Posted: 13 Sep 2017
Date Written: September 11, 2017
‘Framework legislation’ refers to legislation that sets out structures for governance and accountability or other processes for guiding the decisions and actions taken by government or the executive. Framework legislation for non-communicable diseases (NCDs) provides the opportunity for countries to focus their political commitment, to set national targets, and a time-frame for achieving them, and to create cross-sectoral governance structures for the development and implementation of innovative policies. Although they extend well beyond NCDs, the health-related Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) create similar demands for effective national governance. A similar case might, therefore, be made for framework legislation for the health-related SDGs or for legislation to govern particular aspects, such as managing commercial relationships with the private sector or managing conflicts of interest. This article considers the possible benefits of framework legislation, including what issues might be appropriate for inclusion in a framework law. The absence of framework legislation should neither be seen as an excuse for inaction, nor is framework legislation a substitute for detailed regulation of areas such as sanitation and water quality, tobacco and alcohol control, food safety, essential medicines or poisons. The ultimate test for framework legislation will be its capacity to provide a catalyst for action and to accelerate progress towards national and global health goals.
Keywords: Non-communicable diseases (NCDs), Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), public health law, governance, legislation
JEL Classification: K10, K30, K32
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation