One year into the Zika outbreak

5 May 2015 -- On 7 May 2015, Brazil informed WHO/PAHO of its first laboratory confirmed cases of Zika virus. In the last year the scientific community has learned an extraordinary amount about this virus and its effects. WHO continues to lead the research agenda, while supporting countries in the response. This article chronicles Zika virus from when it was first identified, and details how this fairly obscure disease became a global health emergency.

Clean hands, closed doors stop deadly infections in Uganda

4 May 2015 -- In Uganda, taking a bath before surgery, closing the door to the operating theatre and ensuring surgeons clean their hands properly can be the difference between life and death. A study involving more than 650 surgical patients, showed the rate of infections halved after new measures were introduced. As a result, patients are spending less time in hospital, resulting in cost-savings for both the patient and the hospital.

Uncovering health inequalities to leave no one behind

02 May 2016 – Having a skilled health professional during childbirth can save the life of a woman and her child. But, in many parts of the world and within many countries, the presence of a health worker during childbirth is often a luxury. If a woman is poor, she is even more likely to deliver without support, putting herself and child at risk. To help countries monitor health inequalities, WHO developed a new toolkit called the Health Equity Assessment Toolkit.

Get vaccinated: Go for the gold!

29 April 2016 – Immunization stops 2 to 3 million deaths each year, however an additional 1.5 million deaths could be avoided with better vaccination coverage. During World Immunization Week 2016, WHO offices around the world have highlighted recent gains in immunization coverage and emphasized the work still needed to meet vaccination targets. In the Americas, the week has been supported by the 6 time Olympic Games Gold Medallist, Usain Bolt, with the theme “Go for the gold! Get vaccinated!"

Yellow fever vaccination essential for Angola

26 April 2016 – As efforts to bring an outbreak of yellow fever in Angola under control continue WHO is reminding all travellers to the country that they are required to receive the yellow fever vaccination and to have a valid certificate of vaccination to prove that they are protected from the disease and to prevent its further spread.

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Fact sheets


  • Chernobyl: Thirty years On
    April 2016 -- On 26 April 2016, the world marked 30 years since the Chernobyl nuclear power plant accident in Ukraine - the disaster that affected millions of people in Belarus, Ukraine and the Russian Federation, and had a substantial impact on the entire humankind by changing the nations attitudes to nuclear safety on a global scale.

Zika virus and complications

After a spike in cases of microcephaly and Guillain-Barré syndrome, strongly suspected to be associated with Zika virus, WHO declared a public health emergency.

Hand Hygiene Day, 5 May

SAVE LIVES: Clean Your Hands

The campaign highlights the importance of hand hygiene in health care and to ‘bring people together’ in support of hand hygiene improvement globally.

Tweets from WHO


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