Using the law to improve public health

16 January 2017 – Soda tax in Mexico. Salt limits in South Africa. Plain tobacco packaging in Australia. National health insurance in Ghana. A new report produced by WHO and partners has case studies on how new laws have improved the health and safety of people, providing a resource for countries to learn from positive experiences in other parts of the world.

Millions of children to receive measles vaccine in north-eastern Nigeria

12 January 2017 – A mass vaccination campaign to protect more than 4 million children against a measles outbreak in conflict-affected states in north-eastern Nigeria is planned to start this week. The two-week campaign, which starts on 13 January, will target all children aged from 6 months to 10 years in accessible areas in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa States.

Tobacco control can save billions of dollars and millions of lives

10 January 2017 – Policies to control tobacco use, including higher taxes and prices, can create significant revenues for health and development, according to a new landmark global report from WHO and the National Cancer Institute of the United States of America. Such measures can also greatly reduce tobacco use and protect people from cancers and heart disease.

Depression: let’s talk

6 January 2017 – Depression is an illness that can happen to anybody. It causes mental anguish and affects people’s ability to carry out everyday tasks, with sometimes devastating consequences for relationships with family and friends. Fortunately, depression can be prevented and treated. This year’s World Health Day, on 7 April, will focus on depression. The Day will be a highlight of the 'Depression: let’s talk' campaign which aims to ensure that more people with depression both seek and get help.

Working as one UN for environmental health

3 January 2017 – There are many compelling reasons to clean up the global environment. One of the most pressing is that a polluted environment is deadly: every year, 1 in 4 people die from diseases associated with air, water or soil pollution. The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and WHO are creating a global mechanism to bring together the environment and health sectors.

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  • Joint Statement on Syria
    January 2017 – The horrors of the siege of the eastern districts of Aleppo have disappeared from the public consciousness – but we must not let the needs, the lives, and the futures of Syria’s people fade from the world’s conscience. We must not let 2017 repeat the tragedies of 2016 for Syria.

Health emergencies programme

WHO Health Emergencies Programme delivers rapid, predictable, and comprehensive support to countries and communities as they prepare for, face or recover from emergencies caused by any type of hazard to human health, whether disease outbreaks, natural or man-made disasters or conflicts.

Zika virus and complications

After a spike in cases of microcephaly and Guillain-Barré syndrome associated with Zika virus, WHO declared a public health emergency.

Universal health coverage

Dr. Margaret Chan, Director-General of WHO, and Dr Gro Harlem Brundtland, Former Director-General of WHO and Deputy Chair of the Elders

"The evidence clearly shows that, with the right policies in place, greater public spending on health is associated with less dependence on out-of-pocket payments."

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