About WHO

Governance of WHO

Assembly Room of the United Nations Palais, Geneva.

Governance takes place through the World Health Assembly, which is the supreme decision-making body; and the Executive Board, which gives effect to the decisions and policies of the Health Assembly. The Organization is headed by the Director-General, who is appointed by the Health Assembly on the nomination of the Executive Board.

World Health Assembly

The World Health Assembly is the decision-making body of WHO. It is attended by delegations from all WHO Member States and focuses on a specific health agenda prepared by the Executive Board. The main functions of the World Health Assembly are to determine the policies of the Organization, appoint the Director-General, supervise financial policies, and review and approve the proposed programme budget.

Executive Board

The Executive Board is composed of 34 technically qualified members elected for three-year terms. The annual Board meeting is held in January when the members agree upon the agenda for the World Health Assembly and the resolutions to be considered by the Health Assembly.

Director-General

Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus is the Director-General of WHO, elected by a vote of Member States at the World Health Assembly on 23 May 2017. The Director-General is WHO's chief technical and administrative officer and oversees the policy for the Organization's international health work. Dr Tedros took office for a five-year term on 1 July 2017.

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