Violence and Injury Prevention

WHO Executive Board endorses important Resolution on Road Safety and Health to be presented at the 57th World Health Assembly in May 2004

On 21 January 2004, WHO's Executive Board adopted draft resolution EB 113.9 on Road Safety and Health. For the first time in decades, road safety will be discussed at the World Health Assembly in May 2004. The document gives public health agencies a clear encouragement and mandate to strengthen work on road traffic injury prevention.

The proposed resolution urges Member States, particularly those which bear a large proportion of the burden of road traffic injuries, to mobilize their public-health sectors by appointing focal points for road traffic injury prevention. It recommends Member States to undertake activities such as preparation and implementation of a national strategy on prevention of road traffic injury; collaboration between different ministries and sectors; and development of specific measures to prevent mortality and morbidity due to road traffic crashes. It requests the Director-General of WHO to collaborate with Member States in establishing public health policies to prevent road traffic injuries; research for prevention of road traffic injuries; strengthening of pre-hospital and trauma care for victims of road traffic crashes; developing capacity for injury prevention in collaboration with UN organizations and NGOs; and raising awareness of the magnitude and prevention of road traffic injuries.

During the debate held at the WHO Executive Board meeting, Member States and NGOs voiced strong support for increasing attention to what is quickly becoming a major public health problem.

This resolution will be discussed in the context of this year's World Health Day on Road Safety as well as the launch of the World report on road traffic injury prevention.