World Health Organization


August 13, 2022

The World Health Organization (WHO) is an agency of the United Nations. He is a coordinating authority in international public health. Its headquarters are located in Geneva, Switzerland. The organization was founded by the United Nations on April 7, 1948. This day of the year is celebrated worldwide as World Health Day. The WHO inherited many of its mandates and resources from its predecessor, the World Health Organization, which was an agency of the League of Nations in the interwar period. The WHO took over the duties and tasks of the International Office of Public Health (OIHP), which were established in an international treaty signed in Rome in December 1907.

WHO Tasks

The Constitution of the World Health Organization states that its mission is "the attainment by all people of the highest attainable standard of health". Its main role is to eliminate diseases, especially key infectious diseases. As part of the international monitoring of the progress and spread of infectious diseases such as SARS, malaria and AIDS, it also implements programs for the elimination of these diseases by developing and distributing vaccines. After years of eradicating smallpox, the WHO declared the disease eradicated in 1979 - the first disease in human history to be eradicated. The WHO is nearing success in developing vaccines against diseases such as malaria and schistosomiasis (an infectious disease caused by flukes of the genus Schistosoma) and plans to eliminate polio in the coming years. The WHO Constitution defines health as a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. As part of the fight against various diseases, the WHO also carries out global campaigns, e.g. to increase the consumption of vegetables, or to reduce tobacco consumption, and carries out its own research projects - e.g. whether the electromagnetic field around mobile phones has negative effects on health. Some of the findings from this research can be controversial, such as the April 2003 WHO report which recommended that the sugar content of a healthy diet should be less than 10%, which led to lobbying by the sugar industry against this recommendation. In addition to the stated tasks of the WHO, international treaties have assigned the organization many responsibilities for the following conventions - for example, the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs and the Convention on Psychotropic Substances ask the WHO to issue binding scientific and medical evaluations of psychoactive drugs and recommend how they should be regulated. In this way, WHO supervises the performance of the Legislative Commission on Narcotics.


The organs of WHO are the World Health Assembly, the Executive Board and the Secretariat. The World Health Assembly is composed of delegates representing members. Each member is represented by no more than three delegates, one of whom is designated as the chief delegate. Each member has one vote in the assembly. The Assembly usually meets each year in May and, in addition to appointing the Director General (for a five-year term), monitors the financial management of the Organization. The assembly also checks and approves the presented program budget, elects the Executive Council. The Executive Board consists of 34 persons qualified in the field of health, who are elected by the World Health Assembly. Members are elected for a three-year term and may be re-elected. The Executive Board establishes committees. The main function of the Council is the implementation of decisions and management of the Assembly, it is generally obliged to advise and support its work. The Secretariat consists of the Director-General and technical and administrative officers, numbering about 11,000 and consisting of health and other experts and support staff, working at headquarters, in 6 regional offices and in the countries. World Health