The world health report

Global health improvement and WHO: shaping the future

A world torn by gross health inequalities is in serious trouble. The global health community can do much to reduce suffering and death among vulnerable groups. WHO is changing its way of working, alongside member states and financial and technical partners, to reach key national health goals and strengthen equity. The most urgent objectives include the health-related Millennium Development Goals, the 3 by 5 target in HIV/AIDS treatment (to provide 3 million people in developing regions with access to antiretroviral treatment by the end of 2005), and addressing the growing epidemics of non-communicable diseases. The key to achieving these objectives is strengthening of health systems guided by the values of Health For All.

Acknowledgements and references

I thank WHO colleagues who assisted in preparing this article, including Robert Beaglehole, Ruth Bonita, Tim Evans, Charlie Gilks, Alec Irwin, Jim Yong Kim, Colin Mathers, Thomson Prentice, Ian Smith, and Jeanette Vega.

1 WHO. World health report 2003: shaping the future. Geneva: World Health Organization, 2003.

2 Charter of the United Nations, Chapter I, article 1. (accessed Nov 17, 2003).

3 Constitution of the World Health Organization.{9D5}&softpage=Document42 (accessed Nov 3, 2003).

4 Szreter S. Health and security in historical perspective. In: Chen L, Leaning J, Narasimhan V, eds. Global health challenges for human security. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2003; 31-52.

5 National Intelligence Council. The next wave of HIV/AIDS: Nigeria, Ethiopia, Russia, India and China. Washington, DC: National Intelligence Council, 2002.

6 International Conference on Primary Health Care. Declaration of Alma-Ata, September 1978. (accessed Nov 25, 2003).

7 WHO. Health for all in the twenty-first century. Geneva: World Health Organization, 1998: 6.

8 WHO. Primary health care: a framework for future strategic directions. Geneva: World Health Organization, 2003.

9 Yach D, Bettcher D. The globalization of public health, II: the convergence of self-interest and altruism. Am J Public Health 1998; 88: 738-41.

10 WHO. Report of the Commission on Macroeconomics and Health. Geneva: World Health Organization, 2001.

11 The Lancet. Will SARS hurt the world's poor? Lancet 2003; 361: 1485.

12 Asian Development Bank. Assessing the impact and costs of SARS in developing Asia. Asian Development Outlook Update 2003. (accessed Nov 17, 2003).

13 Schwartlander B, Stover J, Walker L, et al. Resource needs for HIV/AIDS. Science 2001; 292: 2434-36.

14 Médecins Sans Frontières South Africa, Department of Public Health at the University of Cape Town, the Provincial Administration of the Western Cape, South Africa. Antiretroviral therapy in primary health care: experience of the Khayelitsha programme in South Africa. Geneva, World Health Organization, 2003.

15 Mukherjee J, Farmer P, Leandre F, et al. Access to treatment and care: Haiti experience. Geneva, World Health Organization, 2003.

16 WHO. World health report 2000. Health systems. Improving performance. Geneva: World Health Organization, 2000.

17 WHO. Design and implementation of health information systems. Geneva: World Health Organization, 2000.

18 Ministerio de Salud de Chile, Departamento Atención Primaria. Orientaciones para la Programación Local 2003. Santiago: Ministerio de Salud, 2002.