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THE WORLD HEALTH ASSEMBLY HOLDS ITS 74TH MEETING BETWEEN 24 MAY AND 1 JUNE
GFO Issue 397

THE WORLD HEALTH ASSEMBLY HOLDS ITS 74TH MEETING BETWEEN 24 MAY AND 1 JUNE

Author:

Aidspan

Article Type:
OF INTEREST

Article Number: 10

The World Health Organization has allowed for meetings to be conducted virtually over a seven-day period

ABSTRACT On 24 May, the World Health Organization (WHO) launched the 74th World Health Assembly (WHA) which is being conducted virtually over a seven-day period, due to finish on 1 June.

On 24 May, the World Health Organization (WHO) launched the 74th World Health Assembly (WHA) which is being conducted virtually over a seven-day period, due to finish on 1 June. The agenda will cover the following topics.

Report of the Programme, Budget and Administration Committee of the Executive Board 1.

The thirty-fourth meeting of the Programme, Budget and Administration Committee was held in Geneva from 19 to 21 May 2021.

In his opening remarks to the Committee, the Director-General said that the Committee was meeting prior to one of the most important Health Assemblies in the history of the Organization. The COVID-19 pandemic had changed the world and had shown that the world needed a strong WHO more than ever. The Organization, while focusing on coordinating and supporting the response to the pandemic, had continued to execute most of its existing workplans, with a projected implementation rate of over 80% in respect of the Programme budget 2020–2021. However, as recognized by Member States, predictable and sustainable funding remained a pressing challenge, with only 16% of funds coming through assessed contributions. The financing structure was no longer fit for purpose, especially given increasing global expectations. Sustainable and predictable funding was an area in which WHO had been working, through the transformation agenda, to become a more agile, impact-focused organization. The pandemic had been a stress test for transformation. A flexible Proposed Programme Budget for the biennium 2022–2023 had been developed that would be updated pending the outcome of discussions with Member States on those recommendations.

During this session, WHA members will also consider the reports of: the Independent Expert Oversight Advisory Committee; Compliance, risk management and ethics; Joint Inspection Unit; Evaluation; Hosted Partnerships; and the Accountability overview.

Following the Address by Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General, the WHA will consider the Admission of new Members and Associate Members. There is only one application for admission from the Faroe Islands, for associate membership of WHO.

On Friday, 28 May 2021 an award ceremony is scheduled to take place during the WHA’s session. Many of the prizes have been established by, or set up in memory of, an eminent health personality or an individual with a legacy in the field of health. The call for nominations of candidates for each prize is sent out each year after the closure of the Health Assembly session, and nominations can be made by national health administrations of a Member State of WHO and by any former recipient of the prizes. The recipients of the prizes are designated by the Executive Board during its first annual session, on the basis of recommendations made by the selection panel for each prize. Over the years, the prizes have been awarded to a wide range of recipients: well-known scientists and researchers; other dedicated individuals or entities who have greatly contributed through their work to the advancement of public health; and to institutions caring for the health of local communities.

The four prizes have been awarded to the following:

  • The Sasakawa Health Prize will be presented to Dr. Wu Hao (China) and Dr. Amal Saif Al-Maani (Oman);
  • The His Highness Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah Prize for Research in Health Care for the Elderly and in Health Promotion will be presented to the National Center for Gerontology (China);
  • The Dr. LEE Jong-wook Memorial Prize for Public Health will be presented to the State Institution, “The National Research Center for Radiation Medicine of the National Academy of Medical Sciences of Ukraine” (Ukraine); and
  • the Nelson Mandela Award for Health Promotion will be presented to the Thai Health Promotion Foundation (ThaiHealth), (Thailand).

 

The Committee meetings are of the most interest. Committee A is meeting to discuss the following four pillars:

  • Pillar 4: More effective and efficient WHO providing better support to countries
  • Pillar 1: One billion more people benefitting from universal health coverage
  • Pillar 2: One billion more people better protected from health emergencies
  • Pillar 3: One billion more people enjoying better health and well-being

 

Committee B will discuss:

  • Health conditions in the occupied Palestinian territory, including east Jerusalem, and in the occupied Syrian Golan: and different issues pertaining to the same four pillars:
  • Pillar 4: More effective and efficient WHO providing better support to countries
  • Pillar 1: One billion more people benefitting from universal health coverage
  • Pillar 2: One billion more people better protected from health emergencies
  • Pillar 3: One billion more people enjoying better health and well-being.

 

The provisional agenda for the WHA can be accessed through the hyperlink or attached link below:

https://apps.who.int/gb/ebwha/pdf_files/EB148/B148_41-en.pdfhe.

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