WHO Head Links Health, Peace, Climate #WorldHealthDay

To mark World Health Day on April 7, 2022, the Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO), Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, has announced a new global initiative: "Peace for Health and Health for Peace."

"Recognising that peace is foundational to all our work on health, development and tackling the inter-related challenges of conflict, the climate crisis and Covid-19, the initiative aims to foster new dialogue. I will be asking other United Nations agencies, civil society, sporting organisations, academia and business, to get behind this initiative," Dr Tedros said.

World Health Day in 2022 is themed "Our Planet. Our Health". WHO is calling on governments to prioritise human well-being in all key decisions, stop new fossil fuel explorations and subsidies, tax polluters and implement WHO air quality guidelines.

In Africa, Dr Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa, notes that climate change is one of the greatest threats to humanity. "The entire foundation of good health is in jeopardy with increasingly severe climatic events. In Africa, frequent floods, water- and vector-borne diseases are deepening health crises," she said.

Climate-related health emergencies are on the rise on the continent, a WHO analysis shows. The analysis found that of the 2121 public health events recorded in the African region between 2001 and 2021, 56% were climate-related. The region is witnessing an increase in climate-linked emergencies, with 25% more climate-related events recorded between 2011 and 2021 compared with the previous decade.

In the midst of a pandemic, a polluted planet, and increasing diseases like cancer, asthma and heart disease, WHO will focus global attention on World Health Day 2022 (April 7) on urgent actions needed to keep humans and the planet healthy and foster a movement to create societies focused on well-being.


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