Seventieth World Health Assembly opens

22 May 2017 – The seventieth session of WHO’s decision-making body, the World Health Assembly, takes place on 22–31 May in Geneva, Switzerland. Attended by delegations from all Member States, the Health Assembly determines organizational policies and approves the proposed programme budget. This year Member States will elect a new Director-General on 23 May.

WHO standards on reporting clinical trial results

18 May 2017 – Some of the world’s largest funders of medical research and international non-governmental organizations agreed on new standards that will require all clinical trials they fund or support to be registered and the results disclosed publicly. Currently, about 50% of clinical trials go unreported, often because the results are negative. These unreported trial results leave an incomplete and potentially misleading picture of the risks and benefits of vaccines, drugs and medical devices, and can lead to use of suboptimal or even harmful products.

World Health Statistics: Cause of almost half of all deaths recorded

17 May 2017 – Almost half of all deaths globally are now recorded with a cause, new data from WHO show, highlighting improvements countries have made on collecting vital statistics and monitoring progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). WHO’s World Health Statistics compiles data from the organization’s 194 Member States on 21 health-related SDG targets, providing a snapshot of both gains and threats to the health of the world’s people.

Happier people in Bhutan by beating noncommunicable diseases

17 May 2017 – In Bhutan, protecting people from cardiovascular and lung diseases, cancers, and diabetes is a national priority: the country has put in place a national plan to prevent and control these noncommunicable diseases. Bhutan is also the first country in the WHO South-East Asian Region to implement WHO’s package of essential noncommunicable disease interventions for primary health care in low-resource settings nationwide.

More than 1.2 million adolescents die every year

16 May 2017 – More than 3000 adolescents die every day, totalling 1.2 million deaths a year, from largely preventable causes, according to a new report from WHO and partners. In 2015, more than two thirds of these deaths occurred in low- and middle-income countries in Africa and South-East Asia. Road traffic injuries, lower respiratory infections, and suicide are the biggest causes of death among adolescents.

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70th World Health Assembly

The World Health Assembly is the decision-making body of WHO.
Watch the sessions live, starting at 09:30 CEST on 22 May 2017, Monday


  • Stand up for human rights to – and through – health, experts urge Governments
    May 2017 – The world is at a watershed moment that could lead to greater dignity for everyone throughout their lives, but only if Governments invest in the relationship between human rights and health specifically for women, children and adolescents, a UN-backed group of politicians and health and human rights experts said.
  • Double-duty actions for ending malnutrition within a decade
    May 2017 – Malnutrition has many forms. Undernutrition can see children dangerously thin for their height (wasting), or their growth permanently impeded (stunting). Inadequate intake of key nutrients may weaken immune systems, impair brain development, and worsen the risk of conditions such as anaemia and blindness.
  • WHO list of priority medical devices for cancer management
    May 2017 – From kick buckets to MRI units, medical devices are an indispensable part of preventing, diagnosing and treating cancer, as well as for palliative care for cancer patients. WHO's new List of priority medical devices for cancer management describes hundreds of devices that are needed for six types of cancer: breast, cervical, colorectal, leukemia, lung and prostate.
  • WHO responds to resurgent cholera in Yemen
    May 2017 – WHO and partners are responding to an upsurge in cholera transmission in several parts of Yemen that has claimed 51 lives and caused around 2752 suspected cases since 27 April 2017. WHO has rapidly distributed medicines and medical supplies, including cholera kits, oral rehydration solutions and intravenous (IV) fluids as well as medical furniture and equipment for diarrhoea treatment centres.

Report by Director-General

Ten years in public health 2007-2017

A report that chronicles the evolution of global public health over the decade that Dr Margaret Chan has served as Director-General at WHO.

Tweets from WHO

World No Tobacco Day, 31 May

Tobacco - a threat to development

The campaign proposes measures that governments and the public can take to promote health and development by confronting the global tobacco crisis.


"There is a need to leverage existing actions designed to address one type of malnutrition to simultaneously reduce other types."