World Health Organization

World Health Organization

75th World Health Assembly will run from the 22-28 May

75th World Health Assembly to focus on “Health for Peace, Peace for Health” for recovery and renewal Geneva/ New Delhi 18th May 2022: In a world threatened by conflict, inequities, the climate crisis and pandemics, the Seventy-fifth session of the World Health Assembly will stress the importance of building a healthy and peaceful planet by harnessing science, data, technology and innovation. The theme of the 75th World Health Assembly This year’s session of the Health Assembly will focus on the theme of “Health for Peace, Peace for Health” and will run from 22-28 May at the Palais des Nations in Geneva. It will include the appointment of the next WHO Director-General. “The pandemic has undermined progress towards the health-related targets in Sustainable Development Goals and laid bare inequities within and between countries,” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General. “Sustained recovery will require more than ‘getting back on track’ and reinvesting in existing services and systems. We need a new approach, which means shifting priorities and focusing on the highest-impact interventions.” The Seventy-fifth World Health Assembly will kick off with a high-level segment on 22 May with speeches from the elected Health Assembly President, Heads of State, special guests, an address by the WHO Director-General and the presentation of the Director-General’s Health Awards. The Director-General’s speech will set out WHO’s five priorities going forward, expanding from the vision delivered at the Executive Board meeting held in January 2022. World Health Statistics will be published by WHO Ahead of the Health Assembly, on 20 May, WHO will publish the latest set of World Health Statistics, its annual compilation of health statistics for WHO’s 194 Member States. The latest edition summarizes trends in life expectancy and causes of death and reports on progress towards global health/development goals for 2020. The 2020-2021 Results Report, also published before WHA, summarizes the Organization’s achievements and challenges in implementing the programme budget. Key issues for the 75th World Health Assembly The Health Assembly will discuss global strategies on food safety, oral health, and tuberculosis research and innovation. It will also discuss the report of the Working…

COVID-19 News

WHO recommended two new drugs to treat COVID-19

The drugs add to an expanding toolbox for COVID-19 treatment COVID-19 Treatment Guidelines: In its latest COVID guidelines, WHO ‘strongly recommends’ the Baricitinib antibody treatment for critical patients. New Delhi/ Geneva 14 January 2021 | The world Health Organization (WHO) has recommended two new drugs for COVID-19, providing yet more options for treating the disease.  The extent to which these medicines will save lives depends on how widely available and affordable they will be. WHO ‘Strongly’ Recommends Baricitinib for COVID-19 Patients: What Is It? The first drug, baricitinib, is strongly recommended for patients with severe or critical COVID-19.  It is part of a class of drugs called Janus kinase (JAK) inhibitors that suppress the overstimulation of the immune system.  WHO recommends that it is given with corticosteroids. Baricitinib dose for COVID Baricitinib is an oral drug, used in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis.  It provides an alternative to other arthritis drugs called Interleukin-6 receptor blockers, recommended by WHO in July 2021. Sotrovimab covid treatment WHO has also conditionally recommended the use of a monoclonal antibody drug, sotrovimab, for treating mild or moderate COVID-19 in patients who are at high risk of hospitalization. This includes patients who are older, immunocompromised, having underlying conditions like diabetes, hypertension, and obesity, and those unvaccinated. Sotrovimab: What to Know About the WHO Recommended COVID Treatment WHO has also clarified that it is not certain about Sotrovimab’s effect on Omicron variant infected COVID patients. Sotrovimab is an alternative to casirivimab-imdevimab, a monoclonal antibody cocktail recommended by WHO in September 2021. WHO has also clarified that studies are ongoing on the effectiveness of monoclonal antibodies against Omicron but early laboratory studies show that sotrovimab retains its activity. The panel of experts developing the guidelines also looked at two other drugs for severe and critical COVID-19: ruxolitinib and tofacitinib.  Given their uncertain effects, WHO made a conditional recommendation against their use. According to WHO, the two newly recommended drugs – baricitinib and sotrovimab – have been invited for WHO Prequalification, which assesses the quality, efficacy and safety of priority health products to increase access in lower income countries….

Antimicrobial resistance

Antibiotic resistance: A safe and easy process to produce antimicrobial agents

 New Delhi, Dec 14: A team of researchers from the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER)-Bhopal, has developed a safe and easy procedure to produce silver nanomaterials that can be used as antimicrobial agents. What is Antibiotic resistance? Antibiotic resistance is a serious condition in which bacteria and other microbes that invade the human body become resistant to the antibiotics/antimicrobials that are meant to kill them. The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared bacterial antibiotic resistance as one of the most important crises facing humanity. The problem is particularly serious in India due to the rampant and indiscriminate use of antibiotics in humans, livestock, and agriculture. There is a dire need for antibiotic substitutes and Nano-technological solutions. The study by the IISER Bhopal team promises to fill the gap. Silver, the common ornamental metal, when present as Nano-sized particles – one hundred thousand times smaller than the width of a single human hair – has good antimicrobial properties. Medical practitioners have used silver in various forms to prevent infections and promote healing from ancient times. Generally, silver nanomaterials are produced using toxic precursors that often generate harmful by-products inside the system. The procedure developed by the IISER team has overcome this problem. The researchers used an amino acid called Tyrosine, which is present in many food items, including meat, dairy, nuts, and beans. They treated silver nitrate, the main component of the ‘election ink’ used to stain nails after voting in India, with tyrosine in the presence of caustic soda. Tyrosine functioned as a reducing agent and capping agent to produce silver nanomaterials. On examining the product under high-resolution microscopes they found two forms of silver nanostructures – nanoclusters and nanoparticles. The nanoparticles were found to kill microbes such as S. cerevisiae (associated with pneumonia, peritonitis, UTI etc.), C. Albicans (oral and genital infections), and E. coli (stomach infection), in about four hours. The smaller-sized nanoclusters, in turn, were luminescent and had the potential to be used as bioimaging probes.  The group also elucidated the mechanism by which the nanoparticles kill microbes. They found that the nanoparticles generate…

World Health Organization

More than half a billion people pushed or pushed further into extreme poverty due to health care costs

Monitoring universal health coverage – WHO COVID-19 pandemic disrupts health services worldwide DUBAI/GENEVA/WASHINGTON DC — 12 December 2021 — New evidence compiled by the World Health Organization and the World Bank shows that the COVID-19 pandemic is likely to halt two decades of global progress towards Universal Health Coverage. The organizations also reveal that more than half a billion people are being pushed into extreme poverty because they have to pay for health services out of their own pockets. 2 reports launched Universal Health Coverage Day 2021 The findings are contained in two complementary reports, launched on Universal Health Coverage Day, highlighting the devastating impact of COVID-19 on people’s ability to obtain health care and pay for it. In 2020, the pandemic disrupted health services and stretched countries’ health systems beyond their limits as they struggled to deal with the impact of COVID-19. As a result, for example, immunization coverage dropped for the first time in ten years, and deaths from TB and malaria increased. Know about universal health coverage (UHC) Universal health coverage (UHC) is a priority goal for many countries and has also emerged as a possible goal in the post-2015 development agenda. Monitoring progress towards UHC is critical globally and especially in countries, including intervention coverage, financial risk protection, both with an equity dimension. Covid-19 pandemic triggered the worst economic crisis The pandemic also triggered the worst economic crisis since the 1930s, making it increasingly difficult for people to pay for care. Even before the pandemic, half a billion people were being pushed (or pushed still further) into extreme poverty because of payments they made for health care. The organizations expect that that number is now considerably higher. “There is no time to spare,” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General. “All governments must immediately resume and accelerate efforts to ensure every one of their citizens can access health services without fear of the financial consequences. This means strengthening public spending on health and social support, and increasing their focus on primary health care systems that can provide essential care close to home.” He added: “Prior to…

When people with HIV can live normal lives then why 680,000 AIDS deaths in 2020?

When we know how to prevent HIV transmission, and how to keep every person living with HIV healthy, then how can one fathom the deaths of at least 680,000 people due to AIDS-related illnesses in 2020 worldwide? And how can one explain, at least 1.5 million new HIV infections occurring globally in 2020? “Every new HIV infection is a reality check and grim reminder that we are failing on prevention – we could have done better. Every death due to AIDS-related illness is not only unfortunate but a deeply disturbing setback, because we know how a person living with HIV can stay healthy, and live a fulfilling normal life. No one has to die of AIDS – only if we can convert scientific gains, words and promises into public health actions on the ground – fast enough and as best as we can” rightly said CNS founding Executive Director and feminist human rights advocate Shobha Shukla. 109 months left to end AIDS by 2030 All nations globally have promised to end AIDS by 2030 (109 months left to meet this target) as per the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and domestic commitments. But we do not have to wait till 2030 because we can make #endAIDS a reality in the lives of people living with HIV – TODAY. Lifesaving antiretroviral therapy (ART) and viral load suppression, along with the whole cascade of HIV care and support, keep them healthy and away from AIDS-related illnesses. Likewise, we can do so much better to break the chain of transmission of HIV. Treatment as prevention – works – along with the whole cascade of HIV combination prevention options. Inaction is not a choice because the price of inaction is unacceptable: new infections and untimely deaths to name a few. “Thanks to scientific research and strong evidence that has given us tools to effectively prevent transmission of HIV, diagnose HIV, treat people living with HIV. That is why it is possible for people living with HIV who can live fulfilling normal lives and manage co-morbidities as well as co-infections. But we have not satisfactorily…

World Health Organization

WHO’s World Patient Safety Day Goals 2021 promote safe maternal and newborn practices

Why is Patient Safety important? World patient safety day theme 2021. World safety day 2021 date. Geneva, 16 September 2021 – The World Health Organization is calling on healthcare facility managers, leaders and health workers around the world to adopt a set of 5 World Patient Safety Day Goals 2021 to improve maternal and newborn safety at the points of care, particularly around childbirth. The goals will be launched at a Virtual Global Conference “Together for safe and respectful maternal and newborn care” on World Patient Safety Day on 17 September, with this year’s theme – Safe maternal and newborn care. Every day, approximately 800 women and 6 700 babies lose their lives around the time of childbirth. In addition, nearly 5 400 babies are stillborn daily, with 40% of these deaths occurring in relation to labour and childbirth. Most stillbirths, maternal and newborn deaths and harm are avoidable through the provision of safe, respectful and quality care during pregnancy, childbirth and in the first days of life. What are 5 World Patient Safety Day Goals 2021? The 5 World Patient Safety Day Goals 2021 aim to improve maternal and newborn safety at the point of care and to accelerate action towards the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of reducing maternal mortality and ending avoidable deaths of newborns by 2030. The goals are to: –    Reduce unnecessary and harmful practices to women and newborns during childbirth –    Strengthen the capacity of and support to health workers for safe maternal and newborn care –    Promote respectful care for safe childbirth –    Improve safe use of medication and blood transfusion during childbirth –    Report and analyze safety incidents in childbirth. WHO is urging health care facility leaders, managers and health workers to sign up to these goals on an online platform recently created by WHO. History of World Patient Safety Day 2021 World Patient Safety Day, established by the World Health Assembly in 2019, aims to increase public awareness and engagement, enhance global understanding, and work towards global solidarity and action by countries and partners to promote safety in health care. This year’s…

World Health Organization

Call for experts to join Scientific Advisory Group for the Origins of Novel Pathogens

Deadline extended to 17 September (from 10 September) New Delhi/Geneva 11th September 2021: The World Health Organization (WHO) extended today to 17th September (previously set for 10th September) an open call for experts to serve as members of the new WHO Scientific Advisory Group for the Origins of Novel Pathogens (SAGO). The SAGO will advise WHO on technical and scientific considerations regarding the origins of emerging and re-emerging pathogens of epidemic and pandemic potential, and will be composed of a wide range of experts acting in their personal capacity. SAGO will also guide WHO on next steps for understanding the SARS-CoV-2 origins. There have been an increasing number of high threat pathogens emerging and re-emerging in recent years with, for example, SARS-CoV, MERS-CoV, Lassa, Marburg, Ebola, Nipah, avian influenza, the latest being SARS-CoV-2. There is a clear need for robust surveillance and early actions for rapid detection and mitigation efforts, as well as systematic processes to study the emergence of these pathogens and routes of transmission from their natural reservoirs to humans. This is critical to helping WHO, Member States and partner institutions to prepare for future spillover threats and to minimize the risk of a disease outbreak growing into a pandemic. From SARS-CoV-2, which continues to wreak havoc around the world, to the next “Disease X”, this global framework to study the emergence of new and known high threat pathogens needs to be comprehensive and coordinated based on a One Health approach. It should also encompass biosafety and biosecurity. And it needs to be scientific, transparent, comprehensive, rapid and inclusive. Functions of SAGO In its capacity as an advisory body to WHO, the SAGO will have the following functions: To advise WHO on the development of a WHO global framework to define and guide studies into the origins of emerging and re-emerging pathogens of epidemic and pandemic potential; To advise WHO on prioritizing studies and field investigations into the origins of emerging and re-emerging pathogens of epidemic and pandemic potential, in accordance with the WHO global framework described in point (1) above; To provide information and views to assist…

World Health Organization

Know whether WHO has announced the COVID-19 Compensation Lottery Prize?

Fraudulent “COVID-19 Compensation Lottery Prize” scam, falsely alleges association with WHO and others WHO Alert on “COVID-19 Compensation Lottery Prize” scam New Delhi-11th August 2021–The World Health Organization (WHO) has been made aware of correspondences being circulated by scammers (acting under the name of Capital Finance, Inc. London), falsely notifying recipients of such correspondences that they have been selected as a beneficiary/winner of a US$1 million lottery compensation prize payment for losses and damages suffered as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Scammers falsely state that they have been appointed by WHO These fraudulent correspondences falsely allege that the so-called “COVID-19 Lottery Compensation Prize” is brought to you by WHO, in association with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF).   These scammers—who claim to be a financial management firm in London—falsely state that they have been appointed by WHO to process payment of the “COVID-19 Lottery Compensation Prize”.  In addition, these scams seek to obtain personal details and, in some cases, money from the recipients of such fraudulent correspondences, including (but not limited to) by requesting recipients to urgently send the scammers: (1) a copy of the recipient’s passport or proof of identification, (2) his/her nationality, (3) his/her occupation, and (4) the recipient’s mailing address, email address and telephone number, in order to enable the scammers to process the fraudulent lottery compensation prize payment. WHO warns the public WHO seeks to warn the public at large that the “COVID-19 Lottery Compensation Prize” is a fraudulent scam being falsely perpetrated in the name of WHO through different channels (e.g., via email, from Internet websites such as, etc.). In this respect, WHO would like to clarify to the public the following: The “COVID-19 Lottery Compensation Prize” is a fraudulent scam; According to our records, WHO has never appointed or entered into any contractual relationship with any entity by the name of Capital Finance, Inc.; WHO is not involved or associated in any way with the “COVID-19 Lottery Compensation Prize” fraudulent scam; WHO is not offering or conducting a lottery prize to compensate individuals, whose names or…

World Health Organization

COVID-19 booster strategy as Delta multiplies, highlights ‘disappointing inequality’: WHO

Geneva 12th July 2021. The COVID-19 Delta variant is travelling around the world at a “scorching pace” driving a new spike in cases and deaths, but it’s exposing a ‘hugely uneven and inequitable’ global gap in vaccine supply, the head of the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Monday. Who DG Tedros Adhanom Gebreyesus said, “We don’t know whether booster vaccines will be needed to maintain protection against COVID-19 until additional data is collected, but the question is under consideration by researchers.”  He said, “Clinical trials on these vaccines only began a year ago, and roll-out across populations even more recently. There is, therefore limited data available on how long the protection from current doses lasts and whether an additional booster dose would be beneficial and for whom.” 

COVID-19 News

Interleukin-6 antagonists improve outcomes in hospitalised COVID-19 patients

New Delhi, 07th July 2021: Findings from a study published on 6 July 2021 in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) have prompted new World Health Organization (WHO) recommendations to use interleukin-6 antagonists in patients with severe or critical COVID-19 along with corticosteroids. A trial done on 11,000 people A new analysis of 27 randomised trials involving nearly 11,000 patients found that treating hospitalised COVID-19 patients with drugs that block the effects of interleukin-6 (the interleukin-6 antagonists tocilizumab and sarilumab) reduces the risk of death and the need for mechanical ventilation. The study, which was coordinated by WHO in partnership with King’s College London, University of Bristol, University College London and Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, found that interleukin-6 antagonists were most effective when administered with corticosteroids. In hospitalised patients, administering one of these drugs in addition to corticosteroids reduces the risk of death by 17%, compared to the use of corticosteroids alone. In patients not on mechanical ventilation, the risk of mechanical ventilation or death is reduced by 21%, compared to the use of corticosteroids alone. About NIHR Bristol BRC NIHR Bristol Biomedical Research Centre’s (NIHR Bristol BRC) innovative biomedical research takes science from the laboratory bench or computer and develops it into new drugs, treatments or health advice. About the University of Bristol The University is ranked within the top 10 universities in the UK and top 60 in the world (QS World University Rankings 2021); it is also ranked among the top five institutions in the UK for its research, according to the analysis of the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014; and is the 7th most targeted university by top UK employers. In severely ill COVID-19 patients, the immune system overreacts, generating cytokines such as interleukin-6. Clinical trials have been testing whether drugs that inhibit the effects of interleukin-6, such as tocilizumab and sarilumab, benefit hospitalised patients with COVID-19. These trials have variously reported benefits, no effects and harm. This prompted researchers from WHO’s Rapid Evidence Appraisal for COVID-19 Therapies [REACT] Working Group, to examine the clinical benefit of treating hospitalised COVID-19 patients…


WHO issues new guidance for research on genetically modified mosquitoes to fight malaria and other vector-borne diseases

Geneva, 20th May – New guidance from the World Health Organization (WHO) sets essential standards to inform future research and development on genetically modified mosquitoes, particularly in addressing issues relating to ethics, safety, affordability and effectiveness. More than 40Lakhs people a year die from malaria alone. Malaria and other vector-borne diseases, including dengue and Zika, affect millions globally. More than 400 000 people a year die from malaria alone. If proven safe, effective and affordable, genetically modified vector mosquitoes could be a valuable new tool to fight these diseases and eliminate their enormous health, social and economic burden. The guidance framework for testing genetically modified mosquitoes, developed in partnership with TDR, the Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases, and the GeneConvene Global Collaborative, an initiative of the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health, describes best practices to ensure that the study and evaluation of genetically modified mosquitoes as public health tools is safe, ethical and rigorous. Current strategies for limiting the transmission of mosquito-borne diseases are only partially effective. New, complementary approaches are needed to close the gaps in current vector control interventions, such as effective control of outdoor biting, and to provide alternatives to manage the increasing threat of insecticide resistance. Research suggests genetically modified mosquitoes could be a powerful and cost-effective tool to supplement existing interventions. “We urgently need innovative approaches to help control mosquito-borne diseases, which have a devastating impact around the world,” said Dr John Reeder, TDR Director. “Genetically modified mosquitoes is one such approach, but we want to be sure it’s fully and responsibly evaluated, as outlined in a recent WHO position statement.” “Like any new public health intervention, genetically modified mosquitoes raise new questions for researchers, affected communities and other stakeholders,” said Dr Michael Santos, Director of the GeneConvene Global Collaborative. “The updated guidance framework aims to answer these questions and help ensure that testing of genetically modified mosquitoes is as rigorous as it is for other public health products – and that it generates quality results to guide decisions about if and how these technologies are used.” “Over the…

World Health Organization

Unless we end inequities, we will fail to achieve Health For All

Special article for World Health Day “Everyone is trying to apply the human rights lens. But unfortunately, on key matters of equity, a lot of many communities right now are in the rear-view mirror and not being observed through the lens of equity and human rights. This pandemic is uneven around the world and uneven in its impact. It has peeled away the bandages from the old wounds of our society and it has also revealed and driven new equities. We are not doing a good job in ensuring that the basic human rights approaches are being upheld- right to access to health, right to personal dignity. In some cases, Covid-19 has been used as a means of denying people their rights. Yes, we have seen great examples of community resilience and people and CSOs coming together in solidarity to fight this epidemic. But, if we are to give grades on how we are doing in leaving no one behind right now we get an F” said Dr Michael Ryan, Executive Director of the World Health Organization (WHO) Health Emergencies Programme, who also leads the team responsible for international containment and treatment of Covid-19. Dr Ryan was delivering his keynote address at the launch of the important report- “World in Lockdown, Development on Hold: A special CPDE report on the (in)effectiveness of the Covid-19 response”. Justin Kilcullen, Co-Chair of CPDE (CSO Partnership for Development Effectiveness) moderated this global report launch and an insightful session on Covid-19 and its impact on implementing the effectiveness agenda at the country level, and whether pandemic responses are respecting the effective development cooperation principle on country ownership, respectively. CLOSING THE GATE AFTER THE HORSE HAS BOLTED “It is almost like closing the gate after the horse has bolted. Addressing endemic inequity that is already in place would have been much easier to avoid it in the first place. We failed to prepare for this pandemic. We failed to invest in community resilience, we failed to invest in the surveillance systems, production systems, technology transfers. We knew the pandemic was coming, and we really have been…

World Health Organization

WHO recommends continued use of AstraZeneca vaccines amid blood clot fears

New Delhi, 18th March 2021. The World Health Organization (WHO) stated that it still recommended the use of the AstraZeneca covid-19 vaccine as its benefits outweigh its risks. Full text of the “WHO statement on AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine safety signals” is as follows “Some countries in the European Union have temporarily suspended use of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine as a precautionary measure based on reports of rare blood coagulation disorders in persons who had received the vaccine. Other countries in the EU – having considered the same information – have decided to continue using the vaccine in their immunization programmes. Vaccination against COVID-19 will not reduce illness or deaths from other causes. Thromboembolic events are known to occur frequently. Venous thromboembolism is the third most common cardiovascular disease globally. In extensive vaccination campaigns, it is routine for countries to signal potential adverse events following immunization. This does not necessarily mean that the events are linked to vaccination itself, but it is good practice to investigate them. It also shows that the surveillance system works and that effective controls are in place. WHO is in regular contact with the European Medicines Agency and regulators around the world for the latest information on COVID-19 vaccine safety. The WHO Global Advisory Committee on Vaccine Safety is carefully assessing the latest available safety data for the AstraZeneca vaccine. Once that review is completed, WHO will immediately communicate the findings to the public. At this time, WHO considers that the benefits of the AstraZeneca vaccine outweigh its risks and recommends that vaccinations continue.”

Mental Health

World leaders, celebrities to join WHO’s Big Event for Mental Health on 10 October

Geneva, Switzerland, 1 October 2020: On 10 October, World Mental Health Day, world leaders and internationally-recognized celebrities and mental health advocates will come together for the World Health Organization’s Big Event for Mental Health. WHO’s first-ever online advocacy event for mental health will focus on the urgent need to address the world’s chronic under-investment in mental health   ̶  a problem that has been thrown into the spotlight during the COVID-19 pandemic. One person dies every 40 seconds by suicide Close to 1 billion people are living with a mental disorder, 3 million people die every year from the harmful use of alcohol and one person dies every 40 seconds by suicide. And now, billions of people around the world have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, which is having a further impact on people’s mental health. The Big Event, which is free and open to the public, will be broadcast on 10 October from 16:00-19:00 CEST on WHO’s Facebook,  Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube and TikTok channels and website. The Big Event, to be hosted by award-winning journalist Femi Oke, will feature an exciting line-up of performances and conversations with celebrities and activists about their motivations for advocating for greater investment in mental health, including: Cynthia Germanotta: President and Co-Founder (with her daughter Lady Gaga) of Born This Way Foundation and WHO Goodwill Ambassador for Mental Health Alisson Becker: goalkeeper for Liverpool Football Club and the Brazilian National Football Team and WHO Goodwill Ambassador for Health Promotion Natália Loewe Becker: medical doctor andWHO Goodwill Ambassador for Health Promotion Talinda Bennington: widow of Linkin Park lead vocalist Chester Bennington and founding partner of the mental health advocacy organization 320 Changes Direction Klas Bergling: father of DJ, musician and producer Tim “Avicii” Bergling and Co-founder of the Tim Bergling Foundation. Korede Bello: Nigerian singer and songwriter Jonny Benjamin: mental health campaigner, film producer and public speaker During the event, national and international leaders who have championed mental health in their own countries and organizations will talk about the benefits of this commitment. They include: Her Majesty Queen Mathilde of the Belgians (corrected from ‘Belgiums’) Epsy Campbell Barr, First Vice-President of Costa Rica Sigrid Kaag, Minister for Foreign Trade and…

World Health Organization

COVID-19 pandemic: Countries urged to take stronger action to stop the spread of harmful information

New York, 23rd September 2020. The World Health Organization (WHO) together with the UN, specialised agencies and partners today called on countries to develop and implement action plans to promote the timely dissemination of science-based information and prevent the spread of false information while respecting freedom of expression. WHO held a webinar WHO, the UN, UNICEF, UNAIDS, the UN Development Programme (UNDP), UNESCO, the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), the UN Global Pulse initiative and the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies  (IFRC), together with the governments of Indonesia, Thailand and Uruguay held a webinar on the margins of the 75th UN General Assembly to draw attention to the harm being done by the spread of misinformation and disinformation, the latter being deliberate misinformation to advance an agenda. “As soon as the virus spread across the globe, inaccurate and even dangerous messages proliferated wildly over social media, leaving people confused, misled and ill-advised”, said UN Secretary-General António Guterres. ”Our initiative, called “Verified”, is fighting misinformation with the truth. We work with media partners, individuals, influencers and social media platforms to spread content that promotes science, offers solutions and inspires solidarity. This will be especially critical as we work to build public confidence in the safety and efficacy of future COVID-19 vaccines. We need a ‘people’s vaccine’ that is affordable and available to all.” Misinformation and disinformation put health and lives at risk: Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus “Misinformation and disinformation put health and lives at risk, and undermine trust in science, in institutions and in health systems,” said WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. “To fight the pandemic we need trust and solidarity and when there is mistrust, there is much less solidarity. False information is hindering the response to the pandemic so we must join forces to fight it and to promote science-based public health advice. The same principles that apply to respond to COVID-19 apply to manage the infodemic. We need to prevent, detect and respond to it, together and in solidarity.” “On top of the immediate impact on pandemic responses, disinformation is undermining public trust…

World Health Organization

WHO calls for global action on sepsis – cause of 1 in 5 deaths worldwide

Geneva, 8 September 2020: The World Health Organization’s first global report on sepsis finds that the effort to tackle millions of deaths and disabilities due to sepsis is hampered by serious gaps in knowledge, particularly in low- and middle-income countries. According to recent studies, sepsis kills 11 million people each year, many of them children. It disables millions more. But there’s an urgent need for better data. Most published studies on sepsis have been conducted in hospitals and intensive care units in high-income countries, providing little evidence from the rest of the world. Furthermore, the use of different definitions of sepsis, diagnostic criteria and hospital discharge coding makes it difficult to develop a clear understanding of the true global burden of sepsis. सेप्सिस का निदान और उपचार “The world must urgently step up efforts to improve data about sepsis so all countries can detect and treat this terrible condition in time,” says Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General. “This means strengthening health information systems and ensuring access to rapid diagnostic tools, and quality care including safe and affordable medicines and vaccines.” Sepsis occurs in response to an infection. When sepsis is not recognized early and managed promptly, it can lead to septic shock, multiple organ failure and death. Patients who are critically ill with severe COVID-19 and other infectious diseases are at higher risk of developing and dying from sepsis. जानलेवा सेप्सिस से अकेले अमेरिका में हर साल मर जाते हैं दो लाख सत्तर हजार लोग Even sepsis survivors are not out of danger: only half will completely recover, the rest will either die within 1 year or be burdened by long-term disabilities. A serious complication of infection Sepsis disproportionately affects vulnerable populations: newborns, pregnant women and people living in low-resource settings. Approximately 85.0% of sepsis cases and sepsis-related deaths occur in these settings. Almost half of the 49 million cases of sepsis each year occur among children, resulting in 2.9 million deaths, most of which could be prevented through early diagnosis and appropriate clinical management. These deaths are often a consequence of diarrhoeal diseases or lower respiratory infections. सेप्सिस…

Mental Health

World Mental Health Day: An opportunity to kick-start a massive scale-up in investment in mental health

Geneva, 27 August 2020 – Mental health is one of the most neglected areas of public health. Close to 1 billion people are living with a mental disorder, 3 million people die every year from the harmful use of alcohol and one person dies every 40 seconds by suicide. And now, billions of people around the world have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, which is having a  further impact on people’s Mental health. Yet, relatively few people around the world have access to quality mental health services. In low- and middle-income countries, more than 75% of people with mental, neurological and substance use disorders receive no treatment for their condition at all. Furthermore, stigma, discrimination, punitive legislation and human rights abuses are still widespread. The limited access to quality, affordable mental health care in the world before the pandemic, and particularly in humanitarian emergencies and conflict settings, has been further diminished due to COVID-19 as the pandemic has disrupted health services around the world. Primary causes have been infection and the risk of infection in long-stay facilities such as care homes and psychiatric institutions; barriers to meeting people face-to-face; mental health staff being infected with the virus; and the closing of mental health facilities to convert them into care facilities for people with COVID-19. Move for mental health: let’s invest That’s why, for this year’s World Mental Health Day, WHO, together with partner organizations, United for Global Mental Health and the World Federation for Mental Health, is calling for a massive scale-up in investment in mental health. To encourage public action around the world, a World Mental Health Day campaign, Move for mental health: let’s invest will kick off in September. “World Mental Health Day is an opportunity for the world to come together and begin redressing the historic neglect of mental health,” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization. “We are already seeing the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic on people’s mental well-being, and this is just the beginning. Unless we make serious commitments to scale up investment in mental health right now, the…

Say no to Sexual Assault and Abuse Against Women

Globally, 30% of women have experienced physical and/or sexual violence by an intimate partner: WHO’s data is gruesome

FIFA, European Commission and World Health Organization launch #SafeHome campaign to support those at risk from domestic violence Geneva 26th May 2020. FIFA, WHO, and the European Commission have joined forces, to launch the #SafeHome campaign to support women and children at risk of domestic violence. The campaign is a joint response from the three institutions to the recent spikes in reports of domestic violence as stay-at-home measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 have put women and children experiencing abuse at greater risk. Almost one in three women worldwide experience physical and/or sexual violence by an intimate partner or sexual violence by someone else in their lifetime. In a majority of cases, that violence is committed by a partner in their home – indeed, up to 38% of all murders of women are committed by an intimate partner. It is also estimated that one billion children aged between two and seventeen years (or half the world’s children) have experienced physical, sexual, or emotional violence or neglect in the past year. There are many reasons why people perpetrate domestic violence, including gender inequality and social norms that condone violence, childhood experiences of abuse or exposure to violence and coercive control growing up. Harmful use of alcohol can also trigger violence. Stressful situations, such as those being experienced during the COVID-19 pandemic and economic instability, exacerbate the risk. Moreover, the current distancing measures in place in many countries make it harder for women and children to reach out to family, friends and health workers who could otherwise provide support and protection. “Just as physical, sexual or psychological violence has no place in football, it has no place in the home,” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization. “We are so pleased that our partners today are joining us to draw attention to this critical issue. As people are isolated at home because of COVID-19, the risks of domestic violence have tragically been exacerbated.”. “Together with the World Health Organization and the European Commission, we are asking the football community to raise awareness to this intolerable situation that…

World Health Organization

WHO and International Olympic Committee team up to improve health through sport

Geneva, 16 May 2020: The World Health Organization (WHO) and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) today signed an agreement to work together to promote health through sport and physical activity. “I am pleased to formalize this longstanding partnership with the International Olympic Committee,” said Dr Tedros Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General. “WHO works not only to respond to disease but also to help people realize their healthiest lives and this partnership will do exactly that. Physical activity is one of the keys to good health and well-being.” Benefits of Physical activity This collaboration is timely. The current COVID-19 pandemic is particularly affecting people with noncommunicable diseases (NCDs). The agreement has a special focus on preventing NCDs through sport. Physical activity helps lower blood pressure and reduce the risk of hypertension, coronary heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and various types of cancer (including breast cancer and colon cancer). Other areas of collaboration include working with host countries to ensure the health of athletes, supporters and workers at the games as well as addressing NCD risk factors, including water quality and air pollution. The two institutions will also work to ensure that the games leave a healthy legacy in host countries through enhanced awareness of the value of sport and physical activity. The two organizations also intend to work together promote grassroots and community sports programmes that have a further reach within the general public, particularly among girls, older people and people living with disability who may find it harder to keep active and healthy. “Over the last few months in the current crisis, we have all seen how important sport and physical activity are for physical and mental health. Sport can save lives,” said IOC President Thomas Bach. “The IOC calls on the governments of the world to include sport in their post-crisis support programmes because of the important role of sport in the prevention of NCDs, but also of communicable diseases.” Globally, WHO estimates that 1 in 4 adults is not active enough and more than 80% of the world’s adolescent population is insufficiently physically active. The new partnership will bring…