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U.N. World Health Organization (WHO)


World Heath Organization (WHO) Logo

Our Goal

The World Health Organization’s (WHO) goal is to “build a better, healthier future for people all over the world. Working through offices in more than 150 countries, WHO staff work side by side with governments and other partners to ensure the highest attainable level of health for all people.”

To combat both infectious and noncommunicable diseases. To ensure the safety of the air people breathe, the food they eat, the water they drink and the medicines and vaccines they need.

History of WHO

WHO began when our Constitution came into force on 7 April 1948 – a date we now celebrate every year as World Health Day. We are now more than 7000 people working in 150 country offices, in 6 regional offices and at our headquarters in Geneva.

Primary Role

Our primary role is to direct and coordinate international health within the United Nations’ system.

Areas of Work

Health systems

WHO’s priority in the area of health systems is moving towards universal health coverage. WHO works together with policy-makers, global health partners, civil society, academia and the private sector to support countries to develop, implement and monitor solid national health plans. In addition, WHO supports countries to assure the availability of equitable integrated people-centered health services at an affordable price; facilitate access to affordable, safe and effective health technologies; and to strengthen health information systems and evidence-based policy-making.

Noncommunicable diseases

Noncommunicable diseases (NCDs), including heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes and chronic lung disease, and mental health conditions – together with violence and injuries – are collectively responsible for more than 70% of all deaths worldwide. Eight out of 10 of these deaths occur in low- and middle-income countries. The consequences of these diseases reach beyond the health sector and solutions require more than a system that prevents and treats disease.

Promoting health through the life-course

Promoting good health through the life-course cuts across all work done by WHO, and takes into account the need to address environment risks and social determinants of health, as well as gender, equity and human rights. The work in this biennium has a crucial focus on finishing the agenda of the Millennium Development Goals and reducing disparities between and within countries.

Communicable diseases

WHO is working with countries to increase and sustain access to prevention, treatment and care for HIV, tuberculosis,malaria and neglected tropical diseases and to reduce vaccine-preventable diseases. MDG 6 (combat HIV/AIDS,malaria and other diseases) has driven remarkable progress but much work remains.

Preparedness, surveillance and response

During emergencies, WHO’s operational role includes leading and coordinating the health response in support of countries, undertaking risk assessments, identifying priorities and setting strategies, providing critical technical guidance, supplies and financial resources as well as monitoring the health situation. WHO also helps countries to strengthen their national core capacities for emergency risk management to prevent, prepare for, respond to, and recover from emergencies due to any hazard that pose a threat to human health security.

Corporate services

Corporate services provide the enabling functions, tools and resources that makes all of this work possible. For example, corporate services encompasses governing bodies convening Member States for policymaking, the legal team advising during the development of international treaties, communications staff helping disseminate health information, human resources bringing in some of the world’s best public health experts or building services providing the space and the tools for around 7000 staff to perform their work in 1 of WHO’s more than 150 offices.

United Nations

We support countries as they coordinate the efforts of multiple sectors of the government and partners – including bi- and multilaterals, funds and foundations, civil society organizations and private sector – to attain their health objectives and support their national health policies and strategies.

UN Photo/Jean-Marc Ferré

WHO works closely with the United Nations system to support its Member States in achieving their national priorities and ensuring better health outcomes. WHO strives to increase coherence, effectiveness and efficiency in delivering results.

WHO collaborates with the UN system to position health in the debates and decisions of UN intergovernmental bodies; contribute to a coherent and effective UN system at global, regional and country levels; provide leadership in health-related humanitarian efforts, including as the Health Cluster Lead; and promote alliances and interagency approaches to address health issues.

How is Data Collected?

The Global Observatory on Health R&D is a centralized and comprehensive source of information and analyses on global health R&D activities for human health. The Observatory will be of use to governments, policy-makers, funders, researchers and civil society to review information on current trends in investment in health R&D, products in pipeline and clinical trials and be able to compare disease in relation to this information.



The Site

World Health Organization website homepage

The site is fairly easy to operate. The option bar at the top will take you to topics, data, media, etc.. Each option will take you to learn more the organization and the mission. Visit at







“World Health Organization.” World Health Organization. World Health Organization, n.d. Web. 27 Jan. 2017. <> (