Halving medication-related errors in 5 years

29 March 2017 – WHO today launched a global initiative to reduce severe, avoidable medication-associated harm in all countries by 50% over the next 5 years. Medication errors can be caused by health worker fatigue, overcrowding, staff shortages, poor training and the wrong information being given to patients, among other reasons. Globally, the cost associated with medication errors has been estimated at US$ 42 billion annually or almost 1% of total global health expenditure.

Brazil: 3.5 million doses of yellow fever vaccine deployed

30 March 2017 – In response to the yellow fever outbreak currently on-going in Brazil some 3.5 million doses of vaccine from the emergency stockpile were deployed to the country through the International Coordinating Group (ICG) on Vaccine Provision for yellow fever. Brazil is carrying out vaccination campaigns for yellow fever in several states, while strengthening surveillance and case management throughout the country since the outbreak began in January 2017.

Measles outbreaks threaten progress towards elimination

28 March 2017 – Over 500 measles cases were reported for January 2017 in the WHO European Region. Measles continues to spread within and among European countries, with the potential to cause large outbreaks wherever immunization coverage has dropped below the necessary threshold of 95%. It is a highly contagious virus that can cause potentially serious illness. As measles remains endemic in most parts of the world, it can spread to any country, including those that have eliminated the disease.

World TB Day: Unite to end TB

22 March 2017 – Protecting human rights, ethics and equity are principles which underpin WHO’s End TB Strategy. Patients, communities, health workers, policy makers and other stakeholders frequently face conflicts and ethical dilemmas. New WHO tuberculosis (TB) ethics guidance, launched for World TB Day, 24 March, aims to help ensure that countries implementing the End TB Strategy adhere to sound ethical standards to protect the rights of all those affected.

Immunizing 116 million children against polio in Africa

23 March 2017 – As part of one of the largest polio vaccination campaigns in Africa, 190 000 vaccinators in 13 countries will immunize 116 million children to tackle the last remaining stronghold of the disease on the continent. To stop the potentially dangerous spread of the disease as soon as possible, volunteers will deliver polio vaccine to every house across all cities, towns and villages in these countries.

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  • France to recommend colour-coded nutrition labelling system
    March 2017 – France has decided to recommend an easy to read labelling system that uses colour codes to guide consumers on the nutritional value of food products. The Nutri-Score system can help limit the consumption of foods high in energy, saturated fats, sugar or salt.
  • Global Health Sector Strategy on Viral Hepatitis
    March 2017 – Worldwide, approximately 240 million people have chronic hepatitis B infection and 80 million people have chronic hepatitis C infection. A dedicated portal has been developed for the first ever Global Health Sector Strategy on Viral Hepatitis 2016–2021.
  • Ad-hoc Interagency Coordination Group on antimicrobial resistance
    March 2017 – At the UN General Assembly's high-level meeting on antimicrobial resistance in September 2016, Member States requested the Secretary-General to establish, in consultation with WHO, the Food and Agriculture Organization, and the World Organisation for Animal Health, an ad-hoc interagency coordination group on antimicrobial resistance.

Fact sheets

Tweets from WHO


Children and environment

Infographics on how environmental exposures start in the womb, and can have effects throughout life.


World Immunization Week, 24-30 April

Immunization saves millions of lives and is widely recognized as one of the world’s most successful and cost-effective health interventions.

International Women's Day

Dr Flavia Bustreo at IPU, 20 October 2015

"On International Women’s Day, we must all unequivocally reaffirm our commitment to gender equality and women's and girls' fundamental rights."