WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus kicked off the agency’s 146th Executive Board meeting in Geneva this morning with a rundown of WHO-led accomplishments in 2019—and a call for solidarity in the face of a challenging year ahead.
“I suggest that anyone that questions the usefulness of @WHO listen to this report by the Director General @DrTedros,” Ilona Kickbush of the Global Health program at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva tweeted this morning.
Highlights (via Twitter #EB146):
- WHO responded to 58 emergencies in 50 countries in 2019.
- DRC’s Ebola outbreak has seen 3,421 cases & 2,242 deaths, but has been steadily declining thanks to thousands of frontline responders.
- 173 wild poliovirus cases & many outbreaks of vaccine-derived poliovirus, mostly in Africa—but WHO certified the global eradication of wild poliovirus type 3.
- Progress toward #HealthForAll: South Africa & the Philippines passed new laws; Greece, India and Kenya rolled out ambitious programs to expand coverage
And for 2020, of course, there’s the surging coronavirus outbreak.
This week’s meeting shapes the agenda and resolutions to be taken up at the World Health Assembly in May.