10 things to know about the Syrian crisis

24 January 2017 – WHO has made important strides in its work during the Syrian crisis. A successful negotiation led to the evacuation of patients in critical condition from east Aleppo. Thousands more, fleeing besieged areas, received health care from mobile clinics. As the crisis continues, WHO's work in Syria remains crucial.

140th session of the Executive Board

22 January 2017 – The WHO Executive Board opened on 23 January and will close on 1 February 2017. The annual Board meeting will set the agenda for, and the resolutions to be considered by, the 70th World Health Assembly (22–31 May 2017). This year the WHO Executive Board will select a short list of 3 nominees for WHO Director-General from a pool of 6 candidates. The next Director-General will be chosen by vote of all Member States at the World Health Assembly.

Finding priorities for health research and development

20 January 2017 – Today’s investments in health R&D are poorly aligned with global public health needs. As little as 1% of all funding for health R&D is allocated to diseases such as malaria and tuberculosis, although they account for more than 12% of the global disease burden. The WHO Global Observatory on Health R&D builds on existing data to enable decisions on R&D priorities.

Using the law to improve public health

16 January 2017 – Soda tax in Mexico. Salt limits in South Africa. Plain tobacco packaging in Australia. National health insurance in Ghana. A new report produced by WHO and partners has case studies on how new laws have improved the health and safety of people, providing a resource for countries to learn from positive experiences in other parts of the world.

Millions of children to receive measles vaccine in north-eastern Nigeria

12 January 2017 – A mass vaccination campaign to protect more than 4 million children against a measles outbreak in conflict-affected states in north-eastern Nigeria is planned to start this week. The two-week campaign, which starts on 13 January, will target all children aged from 6 months to 10 years in accessible areas in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa States.

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  • Joint Statement on Syria
    January 2017 – The horrors of the siege of the eastern districts of Aleppo have disappeared from the public consciousness – but we must not let the needs, the lives, and the futures of Syria’s people fade from the world’s conscience. We must not let 2017 repeat the tragedies of 2016 for Syria.

Health emergencies programme

WHO Health Emergencies Programme delivers rapid, predictable, and comprehensive support to countries and communities as they prepare for, face or recover from emergencies caused by any type of hazard to human health, whether disease outbreaks, natural or man-made disasters or conflicts.

Zika virus and complications

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

Universal health coverage

Dr. Margaret Chan, Director-General of WHO, and Dr Gro Harlem Brundtland, Former Director-General of WHO and Deputy Chair of the Elders

"The evidence clearly shows that, with the right policies in place, greater public spending on health is associated with less dependence on out-of-pocket payments."

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