IOC and WHO strengthen ties to advocate healthy lifestyles

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In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic that continues to affect people’s lives around the world, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) are strengthening their efforts to promote healthy lifestyles, including physical activity, sport and active recreation, as a tool for health across the globe.

Through the new Cooperation Agreement that was signed at the WHO headquarters in Geneva, the IOC and WHO are demonstrating their shared commitment both to promoting healthy society through sport, in alignment with Sustainable Development Goal 3 (“Good health and well-being”), and to contributing to the prevention of non-communicable diseases (NCDs).

“Over the last few months in the current crisis, we have all seen how important sport and physical activity are for physical and mental health. Sport can save lives,” said IOC President Thomas Bach. “We will benefit from WHO advice when addressing the challenges of the post-coronavirus society, where health will play a much more prominent role in public policies. We look forward to working even closer with WHO. The IOC calls on the governments of the world to include sport in their post-crisis support programmes because of the important role of sport in the prevention of NCDs, but also of communicable diseases.”

He continued: “As we are preparing for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 in a safe environment for all participants, we are happy and grateful that we can continue to rely on the valuable advice of WHO.”