Global Health Observatory (GHO)

Urban health

Global situation: In 2009, for the first time in human history, more than half of the world’s population resides in urban areas. In 33 countries, globally, 80% or more of the population live in urban areas. Urban growth has outpaced the ability of governments to build essential infrastructures, and one in three urban dwellers lives in slums or informal settlements.

fact buffet


50.1%of the global population was living in an urban area in 2009, up from 33% in 1960

Urban population growth

Health outcomes

86%of the countries studied improved their overall under-five mortality rates in urban areas between 1990–1999 and 2000–2007

Under-five mortality rate

Health determinants

828 millionurban residents live in slum conditions worldwide

Slum residence


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