The Change We Want to See Youth in Action on NCDs

Antonio Romero Rubio

Antonio Romero Rubio is a medical student and the Vice President of External Affairs at the Asociación Mexicana de Médicos en Formación (AMMEF Mexico), the Mexican chapter of the International Federation of Medical Students' Associations. He is based in Mexico City.

In honour of International Youth Day, he shared some thoughts on the work he's doing to #beatNCDs.

Q. What is the change you'd most like to see in your community?

A. To achieve Universal Health Coverage in order to leave no one behind and put an end to social inequities.

Q. What are the main NCD-related challenges facing your community?

A. Due to poverty, lack of resources and unhealthy lifestyles, we are facing a significant increase of patients with diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and obesity.

Q. Why are NCDs an important issue for you?

A. Because as medical student I have to prepare myself to be part of the future health workforce who will be responsible to tackle NCDs—and, most importantly, to prevent them.

Q. How are you working to #beatNCDs?

A. As an AMMEF Mexico member, I have done a lot of things to #beatNCDs. First, I have helped other medical students to understand their importance of and learn more about NCDs by organizing conferences, symposiums and other academic activities in order to build capacity in the future health workforce. Second, I have attended and organised some events with the community to both raise awareness of the importance of healthy lifestyles for preventing NCDs and teach strategies for those who have NCDs to prevent further complications. Finally, I have attended many events representing my organisation to raise the voice of medical students on this subject, and to show the decision makers that we can participate in all aspects of the health system, especially to #beatNCDs.

Q. Who is your role model?

A. Dr. Jesús Kumate Rodríguez, because of his determination, passion and work on public health issues as Health Minister and president of the WHO Executive Council.

Q. Who or what has inspired you lately?

A. The members of AMMEF Mexico and IFMSA (medical students) because I have seen them make progress towards beating NCDs in many cities and communities.

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