Maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health

Developing a report "Health for the world’s adolescents"

WHO is developing a report called “Health for the world’s adolescents”. The report will look at the health and development of adolescents, present summaries of what is known about adolescent health – including what promotes or undermines their health – and how communities and countries are meeting adolescents’ needs for health and development.

A group of adolescent girls at a school classroom.
Family Care International/Joey O’Loughlin

During the past decade, there has been growing attention to adolescents in global reports, peer-reviewed journals and most importantly in national plans and strategies. It is a very opportune time for WHO to produce a report that synthesizes recent advances in the health sector contribution to adolescent health. It will cover progress in Member States and developments across WHO, strengthen and support global initiatives, and provide a concrete follow-up to the World Health Assembly resolution 64.28 on Youth and Health Risks.

Today, almost 1 in 5 persons in the world is an adolescent, that’s 1.2 billion people between the ages 10–19 globally! The state of their health is important for their lives now and in the future; for this generation and the next.


The report will cover a number of topics including:

  • Nutrition and exercise
  • Violence and injury
  • Mental health and illness
  • Sexual and reproductive health
  • Accessibility of health services
  • Tobacco use
  • Alcohol and drug use
  • Policies and services for health promotion and protection
  • Young people as assets for health.


The aims of the report are to show the importance of being healthy during the adolescent years and motivate governments and individuals to take action to promote adolescent health. It will identify gaps in policies, services and/or changes needed in the environment where adolescents live. It will also show where significant improvements have taken place, and highlight some of the innovative and new developments taking place.

The report will be in an electronic format. This will provide opportunities for linking to work across WHO and other organizations.


The report is being developed right now. The report will be published online in May 2014.