Number of people with depression increases

23 February 2017 – The number of people living with depression is increasing, 18% between 2005 and 2015. In the lead-up to World Health Day on 7 April, which this year will focus on this increasingly important issue, WHO is releasing today a new global report on health estimates on depression.

About 17 million people are affected by crisis in the Lake Chad Basin

23 February 2017 – Years of violent conflict have deprived millions of people in north-eastern Nigeria, northern Cameroon, western Chad and south-east Niger of even the most basic health care services. Malnutrition is widespread and in the 3 worst-affected states of Nigeria nearly 6 million men, women, children and infants urgently need health assistance. WHO is working with the Nigerian Ministry of Health and partners to reach those in need with lifesaving health care.

Migrant Health: Resetting the agenda

21 February 2017 – The health problems of refugees and migrants are similar to those of the rest of the population. The most frequent health problems of newly arrived refugees and migrants include accidental injuries, hypothermia, burns, cardiovascular events, pregnancy and delivery-related complications, diabetes, and hypertension. Stakeholders are discussing improving their health aspects, in the 2nd Global Consultation on Migrant Health, on 21–23 February 2017, in Colombo, Sri Lanka.

WHO teams assist people in hard-to-reach areas of Nigeria

17 February 2017 – Medical teams supported by WHO set up mobile clinics in hard to access areas of north-eastern Nigeria. The teams are called "hard-to-reach" teams (HTR) because their mission is to reach remote and insecure areas to provide urgently needed care to populations deprived of essential health services. Two-thirds of hospitals, clinics and other health facilities in the most affected states have been completely or partially damaged.

Reducing maternal and newborn deaths by half

14 February 2017 – Today, 9 countries – Bangladesh, Cote d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Ghana, India, Malawi, Nigeria, Tanzania and Uganda – committed to halving preventable deaths of pregnant women and newborns in their health facilities within the next 5 years. Through a new network supported by WHO, UNICEF, and other partners, these countries will improve the quality of care mothers and babies receive.

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  • WHO issues first viral hepatitis testing guidelines
    February 2017 – WHO issued its first-ever global guidance on testing for chronic viral hepatitis B and C on 16 February 2017. Viral hepatitis causes an estimated 1.4 million deaths worldwide each year. he guidelines were released in a special session at the 26th Conference of the Asian Pacific Association for the Study of the Liver (APASL), held in Shanghai, China.
  • Sri Lanka gears up to host Global Consultation on Migrant Health
    February 2017 – Health leaders will gather in Colombo, from 21 to 23 February 2017, for a landmark consultation on migrant health. The 2nd Global Consultation on Migrant Health, jointly organized by the Government of Sri Lanka, IOM and WHO, strives to build international solidarity to enhance the health and well-being of migrants and their families.
  • Slovenian National Assembly passes strong tobacco control law
    February 2017 – Slovenia’s National Assembly unanimously adopted a new tobacco control law on 15 February 2017. The law transposes the European Union Tobacco Products Directive and includes measures such as plain packaging, a ban on smoking in private cars in the presence of minors, licensing to sell tobacco products, a display ban at the point of sale and an increase and earmarking of excise tax.

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.

Fact sheets

Tweets from WHO


Infographics on epilepsy

Epilepsy is a neurological condition characterized by recurrent seizures. Seizures are due to brief disturbances in the electrical functions of the brain.

Zika virus commentary

WHO Director-General Dr Chan at the World Health Assembly, 25 May 2016

"Like every other explosive outbreak, Zika revealed fault lines in the world’s collective preparedness."