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August 5, 1992

Declaration Has Health Message for Politicians

JAMA. 1992;268(5):578. doi:10.1001/jama.1992.03490050024003

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THE VICTORIA DECLARATION is in the wings, awaiting its moment on the world's stage.

Issued during the International Heart Health Conference in Victoria, British Columbia, the declaration is a 44-page series of recommendations for reducing health risks. John W. Farquhar, MD, chair of the 21-member advisory committee, characterizes its status as "an agenda waiting to be adopted—not an official policy of any nation yet," although it has been presented to Canada's Parliament in Ottawa, Ontario.

The declaration states that "the primary challenge now is to maintain the downward trend [in health risks] while at the same time assisting and encouraging countries where rates of heart disease are increasing—the developing world, and Central and Eastern Europe—to make use of the scientific knowledge already available from experiences in countries where rates are on the decline." For example, it recommends that governments legislate an end to advertising and promotion of tobacco products, seek