Learning More About WHO

United Nations  World  Health  Organization

Courtesy, United Nations

 World Health Organization building from the South-East

Geneva, Switzerland


Corona Virus:  COVID-19  &
Other Global Health Issues

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Co-hosted by the Government of Poland and the Government of Sweden, in partnership with the European Council, and the European Commission Warsaw, Poland:  WHO Director-General's remarks at the High-Level International Donors’ Conference for Ukraine  -  5 May 2022


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75th World Health Assembly

22 -28 MAY 2022


Courtesy, United Nations / World Health Organization

The World Health Assembly is the decision-making body of WHO. It is attended by delegations from all WHO Member States and focuses on a specific health agenda prepared by the Executive Board. The main functions of the World Health Assembly are to determine the policies of the Organization, appoint the Director-General, supervise financial policies, and review and approve the proposed programme budget. The Health Assembly is held annually in Geneva, Switzerland.

Learn more on the following web page:  https://www.who.int/about/governance/world-health-assembly

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Read Full Transcript on the following web page:

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"Good morning, good afternoon and good evening. Over the last week, COVID-19 cases have risen in four out of the six WHO regions.

Due to testing and sequencing reducing in many countries, it is increasingly difficult to know where the virus is and how it’s mutating.

The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) has announced, through their state media, their first outbreak of COVID-19, with more than 1.4 million suspected cases since late April.

WHO is deeply concerned at the risk of further spread of COVID-19 in the country particularly because the population is unvaccinated and many have underlying conditions putting them at risk of severe disease and death.

We are also concerned about Eritrea, another country that has not started vaccinating its populations.

WHO have requested that the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea share data and information. And WHO has offered to provide a package of technical support and supplies, included diagnostic tests, essential medicines, and vaccines ready to be deployed to the country.

After three years, I will be so glad to meet many health leaders face-to-face in Geneva on Sunday for the start of a critically important World Health Assembly.

There is a lot to discuss in health and there are a series of crises that are fundamentally stretching health workers, resources and systems to the limits, which risks lives, livelihoods and overarching security.

The pandemic will be discussed including how to end the emergency including increasing access to vaccines, antivirals and other lifesaving tools.

Last week, I welcomed President Biden’s announcement about the sharing of health technologies between the United States National Institutes of Health, WHO’s COVID-19 Technology Access Pool and the Medicines Patent Pool regarding the development of innovative therapeutics, early-stage vaccines and diagnostic tools for COVID-19.

As you know, equity is one of the key principles behind the proposed pandemic preparedness accord. During this pandemic we faced many challenges, including a lack of sharing information, a lack of sharing biological materials and a lack of sharing technology amongst others.

This hampered the response, cost lives and revealed the limitations of the global preparedness. For the world to respond quickly and more effectively at the next outbreak or pandemic, the world must prepare now.

At the World Health Assembly Special Session in November 2021, all Member States agreed that COVID-19 reflected the need for all countries to share information and strengthen systems more effectively together.

WHO’s job is to support countries – our Member States – as they negotiate and agree on an accord to commit to protecting future generations from pandemics.

Our mandate is 100% determined by Member States and what they agree.

The accord process is led by Member States with their own Intergovernmental Negotiating Body (called INB), representing all regions of the world.

The INB has now started a two-year process that includes global public hearings with all stakeholders.  

This represents the world’s opportunity to plan together, detect pathogens quicker, share data broadly and collectively respond more effectively to the next diseases X or known pathogens.

Unfortunately, there has been a small minority of groups making misleading statements and purposefully distorting facts.

I want to be crystal clear. WHO’s agenda is public, open and transparent. 

WHO stands strongly for individual rights.

We passionately support everyone’s right to health and we will do everything we can to ensure that that right is realized.

The first ever World Health Assembly, which took place soon after the WHO Constitution entered into force in 1948, was a watershed event in global public health.

And like the proposed pandemic preparedness accord, this did not mean WHO usurped nations’ sovereignty; in fact it strengthened countries’ ability to fight diseases together.

WHO is an expression of Member States' own sovereignty and WHO is entirely what the sovereign 194 Member States want WHO to be.  

Every year, these sovereign governments come together at the World Health Assembly to set the health agenda for the world.

Individually we can’t beat pandemics; our best chance is together.

It was via the Assembly, in the last century, that the seeds of Smallpox eradication were sowed as countries agreed to work collective to consign the disease, Smallpox, to the history books.

In 1988, the Assembly agreed to focus on tackling polio. At the time there were 350,000 cases every year in more than 100 countries. Last year we saw the lowest number of cases of wild poliovirus with just two countries still endemic.

Many people have sight today exclusively because they received treatment for river blindness.

And because of increasing access to antiretrovirals, 15 countries have eliminated mother to child transmission of HIV/[AIDS] and syphilis. 

All the achievements go back to that founding accord, which promoted the individual right to health and enshrined those rights in a collective responsibility to work together against deadly diseases. 

The world faces serious challenges with disrupted ecosystems, new conflicts and the climate crisis.

And this convergence demands a collective response and an accord would be a critical element of that.

WHO is not just fighting COVID-19: There is an Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, an unknown hepatitis affecting children around the world and monkeypox affecting a number of countries.  

WHO is working with national authorities to respond quickly and effectively to these outbreaks.  

The last few years have taught us about our own collective fragility and the threat to economies and security of not working together.

The accord process is at the very beginning of a multiyear Member State-led negotiation, which will only be finalized in 2024 after multiple public hearings around the world. And all voices will be heard.


The essence of the proposed pandemic preparedness accord is to improve cooperation, coordination, and the sharing of data, information, biological materials and lifesaving tools. . . "

See Also:

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Around the World . . .

" COVID-19:  A Global Crisis"

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May 2022: Update . . .

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Looking back as the world moves

forward with the . . .

Global COVID-19 Pandemic!


WHO declares the new coronavirus

outbreak a Public Health Emergency

of International Concern

January 30, 2020

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Courtesy, UN - WHO

Learn more / get latest UPDATES & INFO

on the following web page:

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Opening remarks of the Secretary-General's appeal for global ceasefire - 23 March 2020

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres 5a

. . . This is crucial . . . 

To help create corridors for life-saving aid. To open precious windows for diplomacy.  To bring hope to places among the most vulnerable to COVID-19.  


Let us take inspiration from coalitions and dialogue slowly taking shape among rival parties in some parts to enable joint approaches to COVID-19.  But we need much more. 

End the sickness of war and fight the disease that is ravaging our world. 

It starts by stopping the fighting everywhere. Now. 

That is what our human family needs, now more than ever.  

Important Reminder on . . .

Human Rights and COVID-19

Response and Recovery

23 April 2020

Learn more at:



On the Frontlines of COVID-19 . . .

Let's All Support Global Health Workers

During this Global Health Emergency!


2021: Year of Health and Care Workers 


Learn more on the following web page: 


Detained children at ‘grave risk’ of contracting COVID-19 – UNICEF chief 


Courtesy, United Nations / UNICEF/Giacomo Pirozzi

Two young [child] prisoners stand behind bars in a jail in Abomey, Benin

Children . . . Must not be forgotten!

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Q  U  E  S  T  I  O  N

Who Started . . .

W H O ?

Courtesy, United Nations - WHO

The World Health Organization (WHO; French: Organisation mondiale de la santé) is a specialized agency of the United Nations that is concerned with international public health. It was established on 7 April 1948 headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland. The WHO is a member of the United Nations Development Group. Its predecessor, the Health Organization, was an agency of the League of Nations.

The constitution of the World Health Organization had been signed by 61 countries on 7 April 1948, with the first meeting of the World Health Assembly finishing on 24 July 1948. It incorporated the Office International d'Hygiène Publique and the League of Nations Health Organization. Since its creation, it has played a leading role in the eradication of smallpox. Its current priorities include communicable diseases, in particular HIV/AIDS, Ebola, malaria and tuberculosis; the mitigation of the effects of non-communicable diseases; sexual and reproductive health, development, and ageing; nutrition, food security and healthy eating; occupational health; substance abuse; and driving the development of reporting, publications, and networking.

The WHO is responsible for the World Health Report, the worldwide World Health Survey, and World Health Day. The Director-General of WHO is Tedros Adhanom who started his five-year term on 1 July 2017.[1]

Above Definition Courtesy, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_Health_Organization


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World Health Assembly Special Session

The WHA normally meets each May. This special session (the second in the history of the WHO) was called for in a decision adopted by the Member States at the Seventy-fourth World Health Assembly: Decision WHA74(16).

Must See Video - November 29, 2021



71st World Health Assembly Delegates Agree to a

New Five-Year Strategic Plan

23 May 2018 - News Release - Geneva

Courtesy, United Nations - WHO

World Health Assembly delegates today agreed an ambitious new strategic plan for the next five years. The Organization’s 13th General Programme of Work (GPW) is designed to help the world achieve the Sustainable Development Goals – with a particular focus on SDG3: ensuring healthy lives and promoting wellbeing for all at all ages by 2030.

It sets three targets: to ensure that by 2023, 1 billion more people benefit from universal health coverage; 1 billion more people are better protected from health emergencies; and 1 billion more people enjoy better health and wellbeing. WHO estimates that achieving this “triple billion” target could save 29 million lives.

Speaking to the Health Assembly, Director-General, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told delegates that the new strategic plan was ambitious because "it must be".

Delegates noted that the Organization will need to make a number of strategic shifts in order to achieve these targets, notably to step up its public health leadership; focus on impact in countries; and ensure that people can access authoritative and strategic information on matters that affect people’s health. 

Above Text Courtesy, WHO

Learn more by clicking on the below web links:

WHO Director-General, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus

Courtesy, United Nations - WHO



WHO definition of Health

Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.


The correct bibliographic citation for the definition is:


Preamble to the Constitution of the World Health Organization as adopted by the International Health Conference, New York, 19-22 June, 1946; signed on 22 July 1946 by the representatives of 61 States (Official Records of the World Health Organization, no. 2, p. 100) and entered into force on 7 April 1948.


The Definition has not been amended since 1948.

Above Definition Courtesy, WHO

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