2010 in review: key health issues

December 2010

A child with cholera receiving IV fluid at a Hospital in Mirebalais, Artibonite province, Haiti
WHO/PAHO/Harold Ruiz

2010 was a year of public health challenges stemming from a series of natural disasters. But it was also a year when a long-term collaboration culminated an affordable vaccine to eliminate one of Africa's biggest health problems.

The year began with news of a devastating earthquake in Haiti. WHO spearheaded the health response, working with local authorities, United Nations agencies and humanitarian partners to respond to the emergency. When a cholera outbreak struck in Haiti at the end of the year, WHO ramped up activities once again. Also in 2010, severe floods devastated large areas of Pakistan where WHO and health partners provided enough medicines to cover the basic health needs of 6.7 million people.

2010 saw steady – but fragile – progress towards achieving the health-related Millennium Development Goals. Following the pandemic of 2009, the H1N1 virus had largely run its course and by August 2010 had entered a post-pandemic period. The year concluded with the announcement of a new, affordable and effective vaccine against meningitis, a disease that threatens the lives and health of more than 450 million in the African region.

This photo feature presents a selection of the major health issues in 2010.

Read the photo story

Ebola infographic: What you need to know

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