Health, education and social development progress in implementing legislation to promote healthy diets

The nation’s Minister of Health, Carla Vizotti, met yesterday at the headquarters of the National Department of Health with her colleagues from Education, Jaime Perzic and Social Development, Juan Zabaleta, with the aim of establishing a common strategy for the implementation of article 11 12 and 17 of law 27.642 on the promotion of healthy eating and law 26.657 on mental health.

“It seems to me very relevant to be able to continue the dialogue with the ministries on a fundamental issue such as healthy food”, said Minister Vizotti, stressing that “this is an opportunity to address issues related to the legislation on mental health”. There is also an opportunity, such as listening spaces and team training in schools and universities”.

For his part, Zabaleta stressed that “this working table allows us to find ways to think about the law on healthy food, capable of guaranteeing the food security of the most vulnerable populations”.

In turn, Perczyk also highlighted the articulation between different ministries and “the importance of food education in schools based on a combination of pedagogical strategies to design and promote content related to food-related issues and to nutrition”. Turn on the light.

Health Access Secretary Sandra Tirado said that “this expression that we do with Productive Development, Agriculture, PAHO, UNICEF, NGOs, and in this case with Education and social development is essential for implementation”. of this law. »

In addition, the official said that “although labeling is somewhat important, it is only part of this initiative. For this reason, the work of the Ministry of Education is essential in promoting the development of healthy eating habits from early childhood, as well as the social involvement of the Ministry of Development is important because with its policies it reaches the vulnerable population.

In this sense, it was emphasized during the meeting that the fourth edition of the teacher program should start from the platform of the National Teacher Training Institute (INFOD) in 2022, which was done at from 2020 and has already reached Already Happened. More than 6,400 people with the aim of promoting continuing education in this subject established in article 11 of the law.

Regarding the policy of a healthy school environment, the national authorities reaffirmed the joint work between the national health portfolio, the Ministry of Education and the Federal Board of Education to expand the regulations so that, as stated in paragraph 12 of Law 27.642, non-profit – Food and alcoholic beverages that have at least one warning seal or precautionary legends may not be offered, marketed, advertised, promoted or sponsored in establishments of teaching of the national educational system.

From Social Development, they said that the method they would follow when contracting food and non-alcoholic beverages would be governed by the recommendations of the Food Guide for the Argentine Population (GAPA) and the Food Guide for the Child . Population (GAPI).

Likewise, he assured that in accordance with Article 17, priority would be given to products that do not have warning stamps with regard to both donation and funding to the jurisdiction for the purchase of provisions for soup kitchens.

Law 27,642 for the promotion of healthy food, promulgated in November 2021, aims to promote healthy and adequate food for the population through the implementation of labeling in front of warnings on the content of added sugars, in total fat, saturated fat, calories and sodium. to guarantee. In packaged foods and non-alcoholic beverages.

Thanks to these stamps and legends in the form of octagons and/or rectangles, consumers will have simple, clear and precise information that will enable them to choose and purchase the food product in full knowledge of the facts.

Based on Regulatory Decree No. 151/22, an adaptation program has been established to comply with the front labeling declaration, the implementation of which will be gradual.

Subsequently, Law 26,657 on mental health was discussed and the importance of its treatment within the National Interministerial Commission on Mental Health and Drug Addiction Policies (CONISMA) as well as the actions expressed with the ministries to advance the federal strategy were highlighted. approach to mental health.

“It’s important to start with a background like Mikaela Law, so that all teams know the mental health law,” Vizotti stressed. Likewise, he spoke of the need to open listening spaces in schools and universities and to advance in field work related to training.

For her part, Edith Benedetti, under-secretary for the management of services and establishments, explained that “it is very important to define the contributions and proposals of each ministry in relation to the mental health response”. In this sense, he referred to the initiative that has been proposed in collaboration with the Ministry of Education to bring the health teams of the first level of school care closer to the schools, as well as to complete the adaptation of the program of first cycle.

Ultimately, officials agreed to continue meetings and address issues within the Federal Board of Health (COFESA) and the Federal Board of Education (CFE) to ensure national-level compliance with the measures.

The meeting was also attended by Sonia Tarragona, Chief of Staff, Ministry of Health; Alejandro Collea, Secretary of Quality in Health; and the Chief of Staff of the Secretariat for Access to Health, Maximiliano Azqui. On behalf of the Ministry of Education, Andrea García, Secretary of Educational Cooperation and Priority Affairs, was present.

Joel C. Hicks