The World Health Organization (WHO) works with 197 member states for a shared goal of ‘better health for everyone, everywhere’. The WHO has 150 offices across six regions and the headquarters is in Geneva, Switzerland.
The organisation strives to combat communicable diseases like HIV and influenza and non-communicable diseases like cancer and heart disease. “We help mothers and children survive and thrive so they can look forward to a healthy old age.
“We ensure the safety of the air people breathe, the food they eat, the water they drink – and the medicines and vaccines they need,” the WHO websites read.
The WHO constitution came into effect on April 7, 1948. The date is now celebrated as World Health Day. It was signed by 61 states on April 22, 1946.
What are the core functions of the WHO?
The core function of WHO, as stated by the organisation, is to direct and coordinate international health work through collaboration. For the same, the organisation partners with the UN, international organisations, civil society, foundations, academia, and research institutions.
Preparedness, surveillance and response and corporate services are other areas of work.
What is the WHO definition of ‘health’?
As per the WHO, ‘Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity’. The definition has not been amended since 1949, when the WHO constitution was adopted.
How is the WHO governed?
The World Health Assembly is attended by all member states. The Assembly determines the policies of WHO. The Executive Board consists of members technically qualified in health.
Remember that, Tedros Adhanom is the current head of the WHO.