News corner

  • Survey of Needs for Assistive and Medical Devices for Older People in Six Countries of the WHO Western Pacific Region
    November 2014 -- WHO Kobe Centre prepared the report of the survey, which was commissioned to Motivation Australia and the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons by WHO. Innovations in health technologies, and associated health and social delivery systems, are critical to preventing and managing functional and cognitive decline that older populations increasingly experience, as well as to reduce long-term institutionalization. The research identifies priority assistive and medical devices for older people, provides a better understanding of contributing factors for their availability and proposes approaches to improve access to high quality assistive and medical devices at an affordable cost in high-income and middle-income countries.
  • WKC Forum: Innovation for Ageing Populations – Enhancing adherence: medication and nutrition
    1 October 2014 -- The WHO Kobe Centre (WKC) organized an open forum on “Innovation for Ageing Populations – Enhancing adherence: medication and nutrition” in Kobe on 1 October 2014 in commemoration of the UN International Day of Older Persons. 60 participants were in attendance to learn about the latest innovations for older populations to improve medical adherence and the well-being of elderly patients; and the useful nutrition insight for older adults.
  • WHO Global Forum on Innovations for Ageing Populations
    September 2014 -- Report published. In 2013, the World Health Organization (WHO) established the Global Forum on Innovation for Ageing Populations as an information exchange platform for diverse stakeholders to address the challenge of meeting the needs of older people in low resource settings with frugal innovations. The Global Forum held on 10-12 December 2013 in Kobe, Japan, brought together more than 170 expert participants from 21 countries for 3 days of rich discussion and debate, in order to meet the following objectives: exchange information, views and lessons from key operations and health systems research concerning technological and social innovations for ageing populations; highlight findings and solutions through specific examples of successful, scaled-up innovations; and identify key future priorities for WHO and its partners in support of innovations for ageing populations. The Report provides a synthesis of the presentations, debates, and conclusions of the Global Forum.
  • Revision of Urban HEART
    September 2014 -- The WHO Kobe Centre has worked with cities from 40 countries to implement the Urban Health Equity Assessment and Response Tool (Urban HEART). The Centre has also documented experiences on using Urban HEART including the recent publication of two journal papers in 2014. At present, the Centre is focused on revising Urban HEART based on feedback from city experiences, expert recommendations, and independent evaluations. The Centre would like to invite all who have used Urban HEART in any capacity to share their ideas and suggestions for revising the tool.
  • WKC Forum: Innovation for Ageing Populations – Enhancing adherence: medication and nutrition
    1 October 2014

    August 2014 -- In commemoration of the UN International Day of Older Persons celebrated every year on 1 October, the WHO Kobe Centre will organize an open forum on “Innovation for Ageing Populations – Enhancing adherence: medication and nutrition” in Kobe. Adherence to therapies is a primary determinant of treatment success. Poor adherence attenuates optimum clinical benefits and therefore reduces the overall effectiveness of health systems. At this forum, WKC is inviting four Japanese experts in the field of gerontology, medication and nutrition will present their work to enhance adherence, which can contribute to healthy ageing.
  • WKC at the 12th IFA Global Conference on Ageing, 10-13 June 2014, Hyderabad, India
    June 2014 -- The 12th Global Conference on Ageing of the International Federation on Ageing (IFA) on the theme “Health, Security and Community” was successfully held on 10-13 June 2014 in Hyderabad, India. The conference was participated by more than 300 delegates representing 49 countries. During the Conference, the WHO Kobe Centre organized a symposium on “Driving Innovation for Ageing Populations: Results from WHO-commissioned studies of the needs of older persons for medical and assistive devices in 8 Asian countries” on 12 June 2014.
  • WKC Forum: Innovation for Ageing Populations – Addressing the challenges of frailty and disability –
    24 June 2014 -- The WHO Kobe Centre (WKC) organized an open forum on “Innovation for Ageing Populations – Addressing the challenges of frailty and disability –” in Kobe on 24 June 2014. The Forum was attended by 76 participants coming from multiple sectors (i.e., hospitals/clinics, industry, research, universities, local governments, etc.). Following the presentations of four experts, the topics raised during the open forum touched on the specifics of inclusive development, team approach, health insurance and health research.
  • 7th Session of the World Urban Forum (WUF-7)
    April 2014 -- The 7th session of the World Urban Forum (WUF-7) was held 4-11 April 2014 in Medellin, Colombia. During the Forum, the WHO Kobe Centre held two networking events: 1) Health equity and sustainable urban development in the post-2015 development agenda – Second WHO-UN HABITAT joint report; and 2) Healthy and equitable urban planning through intersectoral action. During the WUF-7, WKC also shared Centre’s work through the exhibition space.
  • WKC Forum: Innovation for Ageing Populations – Addressing the challenges of frailty and disability –
    24 June 2014

    May 2014 -- The WHO Kobe Centre (WKC) will organize an open forum on “Innovation for Ageing Populations – Addressing the challenges of frailty and disability –” in Kobe on 24 June 2014. The world’s demography is unprecedentedly changing. It is definitely and rapidly ageing. A WHO expert and three Japanese experts will present their respective framework, evidence-based body of work and strategic recommendations in moving forward on addressing current and emerging frailty and disability in ageing populations through innovations in assistive technology.
  • World No Tobacco Day - 31 May 2014
    May 2014 -- Every year, on 31 May, WHO and partners mark World No Tobacco Day, highlighting the health risks associated with tobacco use and advocating for effective policies to reduce tobacco consumption. Tobacco kills nearly 6 million people each year, of which more than 600 000 are non-smokers dying from breathing second-hand smoke. For World No Tobacco Day 2014, we are calling on countries to raise taxes on tobacco.
  • 11th International Conference on Urban Health (ICUH), 4-7 March 2014, Manchester, the United Kingdom
    May 2014 -- The 11th ICUH held 4-7 March 2014 was hosted by the University of Manchester and was attended by more than 1,000 participants. WKC organized and presented at many events including three plenary sessions, a pre-conference workshop on Urban HEART, and six parallel sessions. The conference was a valuable opportunity to share and exchange information, as well as to build and strengthen networks.
  • World Health Day 2014
    April 2014 -- On World Health Day, celebrated on 7 April every year, the World Health Organization draws attention to a public health problem of global proportions and what needs to be done to address it. The date of 7 April marks the anniversary of the founding of WHO in 1948. The World Health Day 2014 campaign focuses on vectors, the diseases they cause and simple precautions we can all take to protect ourselves and our families.
  • WKC Forum: Innovation for Healthy Ageing
    – Examples of current trends in research –

    5 March 2014 -- WHO Centre for Health Development (WHO Kobe Centre - WKC) held the first WKC Forum of the 2014 calendar year on one of its core programmatic themes: Innovations for Healthy Ageing. More than 70 participants were in attendance to learn about the latest research in three key areas of Japanese innovation for ageing populations, including academics and students, researchers, health practitioners, local government, industry, media, and private citizens of Hyogo prefecture.
  • Expert review of Urban HEART
    Over the past decade WHO Kobe Centre has supported city and national officials in their efforts to tackle health inequities. The Urban Health Equity Assessment and Response Tool (Urban HEART), since 2008, has provided a step-by-step guidance to local officials and communities to collectively analyse and act on inequities. In November 2013, WHO Kobe Centre convened an expert meeting of academics, policy makers and international organizations in Kobe to deliberate on key areas of guidance in Urban HEART where users can be better supported. The meeting report details the expert deliberations on revising Urban HEART.
  • WKC Forum: Innovation for Healthy Ageing
    – Examples of current trends in research –
    5 March 2014

    February 2014 -- The WHO Kobe Centre (WKC) will organize an open forum on “Innovation for Healthy Ageing – Examples of current trends in research –” in Kobe on 5 March 2014. Population ageing challenges society to adapt, in order to maximize the health and functional capacity of older people as well as their social participation and security. The contemporary challenge then becomes not just living long, but living in good health and maintaining a high quality of life. At this Forum, three of Japan’s leading innovators will present their work to improve healthy ageing through, cutting-edge elder-friendly medicine, robotics and innovations to keep older adults mobile and independent.
  • WKC Forum:
    Suicide Prevention and Community Support

    19 December 2013 -- The WHO Kobe Centre (WKC) organized a forum on “Suicide Prevention and Community Support” in Kobe, 19 December 2013. More than 40 participants came from the general public, local governments and health workers to learn the current trends of suicide cases and deepen their knowledge on prevention and response efforts locally and globally.
  • 2nd WHO Consultation on Developing Age-friendly City Indicators, 8 September 2013, Québec City, Canada
    10 November 2013 -- The WHO Centre for Health Development (WKC) conducted the 2nd Consultation on Developing Age-friendly City Indicators on 8 September, 2013 in Québec City, Canada. This consultation is part of a series of consultations, started in 2012, organized by WKC in an effort to develop new technical guidance on monitoring the “age-friendliness” of cities. Meeting report is now availalbe.
  • Request for Proposals: Developing a Guide for Urban Health Observatories
    October 2013 -- The WHO Kobe Centre (WKC) has issued a new Request for Proposals (RFP) to identify a qualified professional (or team of professionals) to undertake the production of a guide for establishing, operating, and sustaining an Urban Health Observatory at the local government level, building upon the work that WKC and its collaborators have achieved to date, and taking into consideration the outcomes of a related expert consultation held in 2012. The deadline for submission is 10 November 2013.
  • WKC at the 3rd International Forum on the “FutureCity” Initiative, Kitakyushu, Japan, 19 October 2013
    19 October 2013 -- The 3rd International Forum on the “FutureCity” Initiative was held in Kitakyushu on 19 October 2013, under the theme of “Creation of new value through integrating environmental, social and economic value.” At the invitation of the Cabinet Office, WHO Kobe Centre (WKC) presented in the session dedicated to “Evaluation system of participatory governance toward self-sustained development”, and took part in a panel discussion.
  • Advancing Technological Innovation for Ageing Populations in Asia
    1 October 2013 -- On this International Day of Older Persons (1 October), the WHO Kobe Center recognizes the contributions of older persons to our societies and reaffirms the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's call on countries and people to commit to remove barriers to older persons’ full participation in society while protecting their rights and dignity. There is broad recognition that population ageing presents both a significant opportunity and a challenge. WKC is working to encourage greater technological and social innovation to assist ageing populations.
  • Key documents on Social Determinants of Health now available in Japanese
    September 2013 -- A group of Japanese experts on social determinants of health (SDH) has translated into Japanese several key documents related to SDH, including WHO documents. These translations effectively remove the language barrier in accessing essential documents for Japanese policymakers and scholars. It is expected that they will serve as valuable resources as national efforts are made to achieve the renewed “Healthy Japan 21” targets, which include the reduction of health inequity through action on the social determinants of health.
  • WKC at the 10th APACT Conference
    18-21 August 2013, Chiba, Japan

    August 2013 -- The 10th Asia Pacific Conference on Tobacco or Health (APACT) was held in Chiba, Japan, 18-21 August, under the title “Ending the tobacco epidemic – protecting and keeping healthy lives”. 785 delegates from 42 countries gathered to discuss current issues related to tobacco control and linkages with the non-communicable disease epidemic. The WHO Kobe Centre (WKC), in coordination with WHO Headquarters and the WHO Regional Office for the Western Pacific (WPRO), organized a pre-conference workshop: Making your city smoke-free.
  • Intercountry Urban HEART Report Back Meeting in Africa
    17-19 July 2013 -- The WHO Regional Office for Africa and WHO Uganda, in collaboration with WHO Kobe Centre, organized the Urban HEART Intercountry Report Back Meeting in Entebbe, Uganda, 17-19 July, 2013.
  • Emergency Committee advises on MERS-CoV
    17 July 2013 -- An Emergency Committee convened by WHO’s Director-General under the International Health Regulations (IHR) to assess the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome – coronavirus (MERS-CoV) situation today unanimously decided that conditions for a public health emergency of international concern have not yet been met. Director-General Dr. Margaret Chan agreed with the Committee’s advice that the situation is of great concern, although it does not constitute a public health emergency at this time.
  • IAGG/WHO Special Symposium on Age Friendly Cities – Metrics and Evaluation Issues
    26 June 2013 -- The WHO Kobe Centre organized the “IAGG/WHO Special Symposium on Age Friendly Cities – Metrics and Evaluation Issues” at the 20th IAGG World Congress of Gerontology and Geriatrics on 26 June, 2013, in Seoul, Korea. The Symposium received sponsorship from the Seoul Metropolitan Government, which recently joined the WHO Global Network of Age Friendly Cities and Communities.
  • New WKC Publication: “Designated Smoking Areas in Streets Where Outdoor Smoking is Banned”
    June 2013 -- A new publication prepared by the WHO Kobe Centre, “Designated Smoking Areas in Streets Where Outdoor Smoking is Banned”, was published by the Kobe Journal of Medical Sciences.
  • WKC Publication: “Inequalities in noncommunicable disease mortality in the ten largest Japanese cities”
    June 2013 -- A new publication prepared by the WHO Kobe Centre, “Inequalities in noncommunicable disease mortality in the ten largest Japanese cities”, was published by the Journal of Urban Health.
  • 8th Global Conference on Health Promotion (8GCHP)
    10-14 June 2013, Helsinki, Finland

    The 8th Global Conference on Health Promotion (8GCHP) was held in Helsinki, Finland, from 10 to 14 June 2013. The Conference has convened every few years since it was first organized in Ottawa, Canada in 1986, and it is the key event to advance the health promotion field, and presents an important opportunity for the WHO Kobe Centre (WKC) to share its work in urban health and intersectoral action for health.
  • World No Tobacco Day, 31 May 2013
    – Ban tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship

    Every year, on 31 May, WHO and partners everywhere mark World No Tobacco Day, highlighting the health risks associated with tobacco use and advocating for effective policies to reduce tobacco consumption. Tobacco use is the single most preventable cause of death globally and is currently responsible for killing one in 10 adults worldwide. The theme for World No Tobacco Day 2013 is: ban tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship.
  • Implementation of Urban HEART
    7 May 2013 -- With the cooperation of respective authorities in Indonesia, Islamic Republic of Iran, Kenya, Mongolia, Philippines, Sri Lanka and Vietnam, an independent evaluation on the process of piloting Urban Health Equity Assessment and Response Tool (Urban HEART) was conducted for 15 cities in 2011–2012. The evaluation will also provide important lessons for WHO to better support cities in implementing Urban HEART.
  • Visit of Dalian City Officials to WHO Kobe Centre
    25–26 April 2013

    In collaboration with the Government of Japan’s Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare, the Japan International Cooperation of Welfare Services and WHO Country Office in the People’s Republic of China, WHO Kobe Centre received the fellowship visit of four officials from Dalian City, China on 25-26 April 2013.
  • WKC Forum “Control your blood pressure: for your healthy life” in commemoration of the World Health Day
    7 April 2013 -- In commemoration of this year's World Health Day, the WHO Centre for Health Development (WHO Kobe Centre - WKC) organized a forum “Control your blood pressure: for your healthy life” in Kobe. More than 40 participants came to the WKC forum from the general public and local governments to learn the risks of and to know how to prevent and control high blood pressure.
  • WHO Kobe Centre Offered the Leadership Training Course for Urban Emergencies
    24 February 2013

    WHO Kobe Centre pilot tested its newly developed training course for city health emergency managers last 24 February at the Kobe City Emergency Operations Centre. There were 20 participants from Hyogo Prefecture who attended the training course entitled: City Leadership in Health Innovations and Technologies in Emergencies otherwise known as City LHITE.
  • Consultation on Advancing Technological Innovation for Older Populations in Asia
    Kobe, Japan
    20-21 February 2013

    WHO Centre for Health Development in Kobe hosted the first Consultation on Advancing Technological Innovations for Older Populations in Asia. This meeting is paving the way for further consultation, normative work and scientific research to improve knowledge as well as service delivery of health related devices for elderly in Asia and all over the World.
  • Former Director-General of WHO dies -- health contributions remembered
    Dr Hiroshi Nakajima, former Director-General of WHO, died Saturday, 26 January, in Poitiers, France, after a short illness. He was 84. Following a career of research in neuropharmacology, Dr Nakajima joined WHO in 1974, where he helped develop the concept of essential medicines. He served as Director of the WHO Regional Office for the Western Pacific from 1978 to 1988, and as the Organization's fourth Director-General, from 1988 to 1998.
  • WKC Forum
    International Health Emergencies

    18 January 2013 -- In conjunction with the 18th Annual Meeting of Japanese Association for Disaster Medicine, WHO Kobe Centre organized an open forum on international health emergencies in Kobe.
  • Parañaque City’s Urban HEART receives AFHC 2012 Award for Health Equity
    20 November 2012 -- The Tokyo-based Alliance for Healthy Cities (AFHC) organization awarded Parañaque City (Philippines) the 2012 AFHC Award for Creative Developments in a City Category on Health Equity on the merits of Parañaque City’s implementation of Urban HEART (Health Equity Assessment and Response Tool).
  • Walking to school in Japan and childhood obesity prevention: new lessons from an old policy
    1 November 2012 -- The Urban Health Governance (UHG) team of the WHO Kobe Centre has just published an article by the American Journal of Public Health, on Japan’s “walking to school practice” in relation to childhood obesity prevention.
  • WKC course on “Health in All Policies and Noncommunicable Diseases (NCDs)” held at the 5th Alliance for Healthy Cities Global Conference in Brisbane, Australia
    24 October 2012 -- The Alliance for Healthy Cities Global Conference is held every second year. This year the conference focused on “Healthy Urbanisation: Healthy People – Healthy Communities”. During the conference, WHO Kobe Centre (WKC) held a 4-hour short course on “Health in All Policies and Noncommunicable Diseases” on 24 October.
  • Mental Health Day
    10 October 2012 -- 10 October is World Mental Health Day. World Mental Health Day raises public awareness about mental health issues. The day promotes open discussion of mental disorders, and investments in prevention, promotion and treatment services. This year the theme for the day is “Depression: A Global Crisis”.
  • WKC networking event on “Empowering the Future of Cities” held at the 6th World Urban Forum in Naples, Italy
    3 September 2012 -- WHO Kobe Centre (WKC) held a networking event on “Empowering the Future of Cities: Addressing urban health and health equity through intersectoral action”, at the 6th World Urban Forum in Naples, Italy. This was one of the few events dedicated specifically to discussing health issues.
  • Assessing the impact of the ordinance banning smoking on selected streets in Kobe City, Hyogo, Japan
    17 August 2012 -- The WHO Kobe Centre is currently conducting a survey to assess impacts of the municipal street smoking ban ordinance in Kobe city in collaboration with Kobe Pharmaceutical University.
  • Impact assessment: bringing sectors together to act on health
    22 June 2012 -- The UN General Assembly adopted the Political Declaration on Noncommunicable Diseases (NCDs) in 2011 and pledged to promote action through multisectoral action for health (MSA). On 20-22 June 2012, international experts, policy makers and academics gathered at the WHO Centre for Health Development in Kobe to examine tools that will assist policy makers to promote and sustain MSA.
  • "Stop tobacco industry interference"
    – WHO Kobe Centre marked World No Tobacco Day with an open forum

    31 May 2012 -- WHO Kobe Centre (WKC) held in Kobe a public health forum in commemoration of World No Tobacco Day 2012: Stop tobacco industry interference. More than 60 participants came from academia, local governments and civil society groups to exchange their views and share ideas on tobacco industry interference on tobacco control policy in Japan.
  • WKC Forum on Kaigo yobo interventions: the state of the art and future challenges in Japan
    21 March 2012 -- WHO Kobe Centre (WKC) held a public health forum on "kaigo yobo interventions: the state of the art and future challenges in Japan" in Kobe. Hyogo Women’s Exchange Hall in Kobe City, where more than 60 participants discussed their experiences of kaigo yobo.
  • 15th World Conference on Tobacco or Health (WCTOH)
    20 March 2012 -- WHO Kobe Centre (WKC) held a pre-conference workshop, “Making your city smoke-free - 12 steps to an effective smoke-free legislation”, at the 15th World Conference on Tobacco or Health 2012 in Singapore. The workshop was especially targeted at city-level policy-makers and tobacco control advocates.
  • WHO participates in UNEP Seminar on Tohoku Tsunami Debris Management
    7 March 2012 -- The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) held a seminar on the “Management of Debris Created by the Tohoku Tsunami” on 6 March at the UNEP International Environmental Technology Centre (IETC) in Osaka.
  • Safe Health Facilities and Preparedness for Mass Casualties
    27 February 2012 -- Sunday, 19 February 2012 marked the second time that the WHO Kobe Centre (WKC) and the University of Hyogo, Research Institute of Nursing Care for People and Community (RINCPC) organized a public health event at Akashi City. The first time was for a WKC Forum entitled “Strengthening disaster resilience: individual, group and community” held on 20 November 2011.
  • Harnessing community participation on urban health
    15 February 2012 -- “What I gathered while listening intently on WHO Kobe Centre’s (WKC) orientation of its pillars was the prime importance of harnessing and supporting community participation with government support, especially in the urban context where I think the sense of community spirit is affected by the urban infrastructure”, expressed Dr Hirofumi Ando , the President of the Asian Urban Information Center of Kobe (AUICK).
  • WHO Executive Board closes with Japan resolution on ageing
    24 January 2012 -- Starting a year-long special focus on ageing and health, the Executive Board adopted a resolution calling for countries to promote ‘active ageing’ and establish measures that encourage healthy living throughout the many stages of life.
  • Living a culture of disaster resilience at all levels
    21 November 2011 -- “Building, strengthening and enriching the resilience of nations, cities and communities to disasters is every citizen, family and community’s responsibility” – was the message which resonated on the occasion of the Joint WHO Kobe Centre (WKC) and University of Hyogo Forum held on 20 November 2011 at the University of Hyogo, Akashi City, Japan.
  • Breast cancer: the advantage of early detection
    5 October 2011 -- Breast cancer is the leading cause of cancer in women both in developed and developing countries and is also the main cause of cancer for women in Japan.
  • Graphic health warnings on tobacco packaging on the increase
    7 July 2011 -- Over one billion people in 19 countries are now covered by laws requiring large, graphic health warnings on packages of tobacco, nearly double the number of two years ago.
  • Concert part of final push to end polio
    23 June 2011 -- The "End Polio Now" Charity Concert by Rotary International District 2680 was held at the Hyogo House on 19 June.
  • "Separate smoking areas in no way control smoke adequately" - head of tobacco control society
    15 June 2011 -- WHO Kobe Centre presented its research on Smoke Free Cities at a public lecture in Sanda City, Hyogo entitled “I Love Clean Air – preventing secondhand smoke” on Saturday, 11 June.
  • Symposium highlights issue of indoor smoking bans in Japan
    6 June 2011 -- Physician and tobacco control advocate Dr Junpaku Miyamoto called for “simple and clear” measures to provide people with full protection from exposure to secondhand tobacco smoke (SHS) in Japan, at a public forum, “WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC)”, on 4 June.
  • Total smoking ban at Kobe City Government Offices
    31 May 2011 -- As of 31 May, World No Tobacco Day, Kobe Municipal Government implemented a total smoking ban in all spaces of the city’s main and ward offices.
  • Historical agreements at the Sixty-fourth World Health Assembly
    24 May 2011 -- In her closing address Director-General Dr Margaret Chan praised delegates for consensus on issues that profoundly affect public health.
  • WHO launches one-stop shop for health data in cities
    16 May 2011 -- With urbanization as a leading trend in health issues over the next decade and beyond, the WHO has launched the first-ever global access to urban health data.
  • Saving 5 million lives on our streets and highways by 2020
    10 May 2011 -- Road traffic injuries are now the number one cause of death globally for young people aged 15-29.
  • New WHO report: deaths from noncommunicable diseases on the rise
    3 May 2011 -- Noncommunicable diseases are the leading killer today and are on the increase, the first WHO Global status report on noncommunicable diseases launched on 27 April confirms.

Contact us

World Health Organization Centre for Health Development
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Chuo-ku, Kobe 651-0073
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Telephone: (+81) 78-230-3100
Fax: (+81) 78-230-3178
E-mail: wkc@who.int