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GENEVA 21-26 May 2012 65th World Health Assembly meets

Representatives of the 193 member states of the World Health Organization gather to set priorities, hear reports on programs and elect a Directo

May 21, 2012 - NULL

GENEVA 21-26 May 2012 65th World Health Assembly meets

Representatives of the 193 member states of the World Health Organization gather to set priorities, hear reports on programs and elect a Director-General. As the only candidate, Dr. Margaret Chan can count on re-election, and the member states can expect a reminder from her that priorities and programs require proper funding. The WHO reports that the shortfall threatens gains in its tobacco and malaria fights and in efforts to deal with emerging drug and insecticide resistance.

In Dr. Chan's concluding speech at the 64th Assembly, she referred often to

GENEVA 21-26 May 2012 65th World Health Assembly meets

Representatives of the 193 member states of the World Health Organization gather to set priorities, hear reports on programs and elect a Director-General. As the only candidate, Dr. Margaret Chan can count on re-election, and the member states can expect a reminder from her that priorities and programs require proper funding. The WHO reports that the shortfall threatens gains in its tobacco and malaria fights and in efforts to deal with emerging drug and insecticide resistance.

In Dr. Chan's concluding speech at the 64th Assembly, she referred often to the impact of the global financial crisis on WHO programs. She described 2011 as the start of a time of unprecedented reforms at WHO, but chided members for not supporting them properly. "You want a number of managerial and administrative reforms, such as a streamlined, more realistic budget that works as an accountability tool. You want reforms that make it easier to measure the impact of investments. You want greater transparency and alignment of work at all levels of the Organization. And you want this to happen now. If you give us an average of 25 resolutions at each Health Assembly, yet give us insufficient funds, how can you hold WHO accountable for implementing your decisions and recommendations?"

In December WHO reported that malaria mortality rates have fallen by more than 25 per cent globally since 2000, and by 33 per cent in the WHO African Region. The report attributed the gains to "a significant scaling-up of malaria prevention and control measures in the last decade, including the widespread use of bed nets, better diagnostics and a wider availability of effective medicines to treat malaria."

Despite the fight to end tobacco use, tobacco kills nearly 6 million people around the world, according to the WHO, as a result of both direct consumption and exposure to secondhand smoke.

Child health, chronic diseases, malaria and maternal health, as well as the program budget, administration and management issues matters of the organization make up the typical agenda of WHO meetings. (WRITTEN Dec 2011)

RELATED READING:

Historical agreements at the Sixty-fourth World Health Assembly (WHO 24 May 2011)
http://www.who.int/dg/speeches/2011/wha_20110524/en/index.html

WHO reform at crossroads (Euractiv 12 Dec 2011)
http://www.euractiv.com/health/reform-crossroads-analysis-509623

WHO slams tobacco firms for 'harassment' (AP/SMH 24 Nov 2011)
http://news.smh.com.au/breaking-news-world/who-slams
-tobacco-firms-for-harassment-20111124-1nvjw.html

Antimicrobials: Is intensive farming fuelling a health crisis? (Farmers Guardian 25 Nov 2011)
http://www.farmersguardian.com/home/livestock/livestock
-features/antimicrobials-is-intensive-farming-fuelling-a-health-crisis?/43212.article

Date written/update: 2012-05-21