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Creating Healthier, Safer Cities: Highlights From the 2024 Partnership for Healthy Cities Summit

More than 200 participants representing 52 cities attended the second annual Partnership for Healthy Cities Summit in Cape Town, South Africa

More than half the world now lives in urban areas—a number that’s projected to rise to over two-thirds of the population by 2050. This makes cities and local leaders well positioned to transform the fight against noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) and injuries.

In March 2024, more than 200 participants representing 52 cities in 40 countries met in Cape Town, South Africa for the second annual Partnership for Healthy Cities Summit. Over the course of three days, representatives from health, transportation and other city agencies exchanged new policy ideas for noncommunicable disease and injury prevention and ways to secure political and financial support to make these ideas a reality.

The Partnership for Healthy Cities is a global network of 74 cities, supported by Bloomberg Philanthropies, the World Health Organization and Vital Strategies, made up of mayors and local leaders who are using proven interventions to make urban centers healthier and safer.

From the summit: See how three urban leaders are stepping up to make their cities healthier and safer.

Before the summit, the network issued a call for greater financing for urban health to equip local leaders with the resources and authority needed to be responsive to public health crises, particularly NCD and injury prevention. Guaranteed loans, subsidies, and matching funds from national governments are some of the solutions outlined in the statement to help accelerate action on local health priorities.

Cape Town Mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis; During the Summit the city announced a new initiative to improve health equity

Other highlights from the summit include:

  • Milan, Italy joined the Partnership, bringing the total number of cities in the network to 74.
  • Dublin, Ireland announced its injury-prevention initiative, which will pilot cutting-edge technologies for evaluating and measuring the impact of the city’s active travel investments for walking and cycling.
  • Cape Town, South Africa, the summit’s host city, announced a new urban health initiative to inform policy and improve health equity.
Learn more about how three cities in the partnership—Accra, Ghana; Córdoba, Argentina; and Amman, Jordan—have implemented effective public health policies, on topics ranging from road safety to tobacco control and more, to improve the lives of their residents.

“We’re certainly not alone in trying to draw attention to the issues that we’re working on, to draw more funding to these issues [which] will lead us to equitable results for the people in your cities around the world.”

– Ariella Rojhani, Director, Partnership for Healthy Cities, Vital Strategies

As the implementing partner for the initiative, Vital Strategies provides technical assistance, supports communication and public relations efforts, and disburses grants to participating cities. Read more about our work.

More Resources

  • Cities in the partnership focus on a variety of public health issues. Read more at
  • Policy Accelerator: Explore tools and resources that help cities bring their policy ideas to fruition.