WHO: Structure, role and issues

Structure, History and Issues to be covered

Critically examine the role of World Health Organisation in addressing various health issues across the world. Also write a note on India‘s participation in WHO‘s activities. (200 Words)
Role WHO played:
  1. In initial years, WHO applied its technical and medical expertise to initiate disease specific eradication programmes such as malaria and smallpox (1967). Later was a huge success while former was a failure.
  2. The adopting of Alma-Ata convention in 1978 focussing at basic needs approach with focus on primary health was a significant achievement
  3. Model list of essential medicines in 1977 and international code on marketing of breast milk substitutes were other achievements
  4. Health as significant component of MDG.
  5. WHO has helped countries including India in eradication polio
  6. Recently, WHO played major role in combating the epidemic threat of Ebola in African region. It has mobilised funding, personnel and resources for this purpose.
  7. WHO is now emphasizing community participation as a necessary condition for achieving high standards of health instead of hospital based healthcare is also a significant achievement. This has translated to policy changes in a number of countries.
  8. It provides institutional leadership in combating Non-communicable diseases (NCDs), including heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes and chronic lung disease, and mental health conditions – together with violence and injuries
India’s role in WHO
  1. Has donated 2.1m $ to WHO contingency fund and hence providing resources which decreases the health deficit across the world.
  2. By presiding the World Health assembly after 18 years, in the near future India’s role will be substantial.
  3. Being one of the leaders in generic drugs market and low cost vaccines, India is playing a constructive role in reducing health inequities among and within LDCs.



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