Humanitarian Health Action

Questions and answers about WHO's role in Humanitarian Health Action


Where does WHO get its funding for crises?

Emergency Risk Management and Humanitarian Response departments' budget is approved by the World Health Assembly biannually. The budget for the 2008-2009 biennium amounts to USD 218 million, 67% higher than the previous biennium.

This budget covers the core work of WHO in humanitarian emergencies and crises across the three levels of the Organization: HQ, Regional Offices, and Country Offices in the following manner:

  • USD 137.9 million at country level;
  • USD 50.9 million at regional level;
  • USD 29.6 million at global level.

The sources of funding for the core budget of WHO in the Area of Emergencies and Crises for the period 2008-2009 are:

  • 8% assessed contributions from Member States (approximately USD 17 million);
  • 92% voluntary contributions (approximately USD 201 million).

Voluntary contributions come from different sources:

  • Bilateral contributions from Member States earmarked for specific emergencies;
  • Unearmarked bilateral contributions from Member States;
  • Allocations from the UN Central Emergency Response Fund;
  • Allocations from trust funds and humanitarian pooled funds;
  • Funds from foundations and health partners.
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