Promoting health through the life-course

Discovering who misses out on health in Indonesia

Health equity graph

21 JULY 2017 – While many countries have improved the overall health of their populations, national averages don’t tell the whole story, and groups of people can miss out on health services for a variety of reasons. WHO has developed a set of resources to monitor health inequalities – one of which, the Health Equity Assessment Toolkit (HEAT), was recently tested in Indonesia, allowing the country to analyse and interpret inequalities in health.

Partners launch report that measures progress towards ambitious targets set to improve health of women, children and adolescents

18 JULY 2017 – The first Progress Report on the Global Strategy for Women’s, Children’s and Adolescents’ Health was launched at the High-Level Political Forum in New York on 18 July. It is a critical tool for accountability and advocacy and provides a snapshot of achievements by countries and partners, highlighting the power of partnership to accelerate progress in a complex and evolving development landscape. The report notes that despite general progress, including in some of the poorest countries, major challenges persist for the survival and well-being of women, children and adolescents.

1 in 10 infants worldwide did not receive any vaccinations in 2016

A child being vaccinated.

17 JULY 2017 - Worldwide, 12.9 million infants, nearly 1 in 10, did not receive any vaccinations in 2016, according to new estimates from WHO and UNICEF. These infants missed the first dose of diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis (DTP)-containing vaccine, putting them at serious risk. Additionally, an estimated 6.6 million infants who did receive their first dose of DTP-containing vaccine did not complete the full, three dose DTP immunization series (DTP3) in 2016.

2.1 billion people lack safe drinking water at home

12 JULY 2017 – Some 3 in 10 people worldwide lack access to safe, readily available water at home, and 6 in 10 people lack safely managed sanitation, according to a new report by WHO and UNICEF. Billions of people have had basic drinking water and sanitation since 2000, but these are not necessarily safe water and sanitation services. Many homes, healthcare facilities, and schools also still lack soap and water for handwashing.

Lack of family planning casts a shadow over the future for millions of women and girls on the move

11 JULY 2017 – Today, policymakers, donors, and advocates from around the world will gather at the Family Planning Summit in London to discuss efforts to reach global family planning goals. By investing in family planning we also invest in realizing human rights, upholding dignity, and sowing the seeds of truly sustainable development, especially for women and girls on the move.

Antibiotic-resistant gonorrhoea on the rise, new drugs needed

image of youth in park
WHO /Sergey Volkov

7 JULY 2017 – Data from 77 countries show that antibiotic resistance is making gonorrhoea – a common sexually-transmitted infection – much harder, and sometimes impossible, to treat. WHO reports widespread resistance to older and cheaper antibiotics. Some countries – particularly high-income ones, where surveillance is best – are finding cases of the infection that are untreatable by all known antibiotics.

Launch of the Global National Immunization Technical Advisory Group Network

Karin Knufmann-Happe, Director General for Health Protection, speaks during the meeting
Hans-Günter Bredow

5 JULY 2017 – The second Global National Immunization Technical Advisory Group Network (GNN) meeting was held in Berlin from 28-29 June. The meeting was jointly organized by WHO, the Robert Koch Institute, US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Prevention and Agence de Médecine Preventive−Health Policy and Institutional Development Center (AMP-HPID).

Welcoming WHO’s new Director-General

1 JULY 2017 – Today, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus begins his 5-year term as WHO’s new Director-General. Dr Tedros plans to focus on five main areas of work during his tenure: achieving universal health coverage; strengthening the capacity of national authorities and local communities to detect, prevent and manage health emergencies; improving the health and well-being of women, children and adolescents; addressing the health impacts of climate and environmental change; and building a transformed, transparent and accountable WHO.

Protecting health from climate change

A young man near a river in Africa

29 JUNE 2017 – Climate change undermines access to safe water, adequate food, and clean air, exacerbating the approximately 12.6 million deaths each year that are caused by avoidable environmental risk factors. Between 2030 and 2050, climate change is expected to cause approximately 250 000 additional deaths per year, from malnutrition, malaria, diarrhoea and heat stress, and billions of dollars in direct damage costs to health. WHO works with countries to protect the most vulnerable populations from the health effects of extreme weather events and increase resilience to long-term climate change.

Latest life-course news


Promoting good health through the life-
course cuts across all areas of WHO’s
work including the health of women
before, during and after pregnancy, and
of newborns, children, adolescents,
and older people, taking into account
environmental risks, social
determinants of health, gender, equity,
and human rights.

Contact us

Dr Flavia Bustreo
Assistant Director-General
Family, Women's and Children's Health
World Health Organization
20 Avenue Appia
1211 Geneva 27