WHO's primary role is to direct international health within the United Nations' system and to lead partners in global health responses.
- Health Topics
World Health Assembly » ... Self-care interventions for...
- Coronavirus Disease (Covid
On 31 December 2019, WHO was informed of a cluster of cases...
World Health Organization Coronavirus disease situation...
- Health Topics
- Main Responsibilities
- Who Is in Charge?
- Covid-19 Response
- Past Emergency Response
To support its three main missions, WHO engages in a variety of technical and practical functions related to disease prevention, emergency response, and direct care delivery.
As an agency of the United Nations, WHO’s governing body – the World Health Assembly (WHA) – includes representatives of every United Nations Member State. WHO’s structure includes an executive board comprised of 34 technically qualified representatives from the various Member States. These members generally possess an extensive background in clinical or public health. The WHA elects a Director-General every five years. Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus was elected in 2017 for a term that expires in 2022. An Ethiopian, Ghebreyesus is the first WHO Director-General elected from the group’s African region. WHO also organizes numerous committees and working groups, often dedicated to single-interest initiatives like road safety.
The WHA currently consists of 194 members, one designee from each Member State. Meetings of the WHA and Executive Board may be attended by “non-State actors” (non-governmental organizations, academic institutions, philanthropic organizations, and others) who may observe and make statements to the body, but cannot vote. To carry out its global mission, WHO engages in “partnerships, networks, and alliances” with a wide variety of groups in various countries to facilitate its ability to coordinate transportation, lodging, and other services.
WHO issued its first situation report—a sort of daily status report—regarding COVID-19 on January 20, 2020. This report described a “pneumonia of unknown etiology … detected in Wuhan City, Hubei Province of China” on December 31, 2019. Upon being notified of these pneumonia cases on January 2, 2020, WHO activated its incident management system to provide support within China and the surrounding region to contain and manage the threat. WHO has subsequently issued more than 90 additional situation reports, each containing surveillance information, statistics, clinical information, and guidelines for responding to the threat in every country around the globe.
WHO specializes in rapid identification of emerging health threats, such as COVID-19, and activation of resources to mitigate the threat. It has successfully identified and responded to previous health emergencies.
Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by a newly discovered coronavirus. Most people infected with the COVID-19 virus will experience mild to moderate respiratory illness and recover without requiring special treatment.
The Bulletin of the World Health Organization is a fully open-access journal of public health with a special focus on low and middle-income countries.It was first published in 1948 and, since then, has sought to make its full contents as widely available as possible.
The world lacked the tools to respond to a deadly pandemic in 1918, but today the global health landscape looks markedly different thanks to foundations, NGOs, national health agencies, and the WHO. Yet these pieces will not always work together in harmony.
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The Constitution of the World Health Organization, which came into force on April 7, 1948, defined health “as a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being.”. The writers of the Constitution were clearly aware of the tendency of seeing health as a state dependent on the presence or absence of diseases: so they added to that ...
- Norman Sartorius