n/a Director-General announces structural changes
The WHO Director-General, Dr Margaret Chan, today announced a number of changes to the structure of the Organization.
In a message to staff, Dr Chan said the changes would "bring a closer alignment around our work on health security and the environment, endemic communicable diseases, research and UN reform."
Changes, which will take effect from November 1, include:
The Communicable Diseases cluster is renamed Health Security and Environment and will include the department of Epidemic and Pandemic Alert and Response with the addition of the Cholera team and the team on Disease Control in Humanitarian Emergencies, the department of Protection of the Human Environment and the department of Food Safety, Zoonoses and Foodborne Diseases. These changes reflect the expanded scope of the International Health Regulations (2005), which include emergencies caused by chemicals and other environmental hazards, and outbreaks of foodborne disease. Dr David Heymann will continue to lead this cluster and to serve as Representative of the Director-General for Polio Eradication.
The HIV/AIDS, TB, Malaria cluster is renamed HIV/AIDS, TB, Malaria and Neglected Tropical Diseases cluster and will include the department for Control of Neglected Tropical Diseases. Dr Hiroki Nakatani will continue to lead this cluster.
The Information, Evidence and Research cluster now includes the Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases (TDR). It will also include a new department on Ethics, Equity, Trade and Human Rights, created by merging two existing departments. Dr Tim Evans will continue to lead this cluster.
The cluster of Sustainable Development and Healthy Environments no longer exists. Its component departments have been moved to other clusters to bring closer alignment. Ms Susanne Weber-Mosdorf continues as an Assistant Director-General, with responsibility for European Union Affairs.
Noncommunicable Diseases and Mental Health cluster: Dr Catherine Le Galès-Camus is returning to her home country, France. Mr Denis Aitken will serve as Assistant Director-General ad interim for this cluster.
Office of the Director-General: Mr Liu Peilong, Adviser to the Director-General, is retiring and will return to China. Mr Fu Cong, from China, is appointed as Adviser to the Director-General. He is currently Minister Counsellor at the Chinese Mission to the United Nations in Geneva.
For further information, please contact:
Department of Communications
World Health Organization, Geneva
Telephone: +41 22 791 3215
Mobile: +41 79 475 5534
20/09/2007 UNITAID celebrates major achievements in first year of existence
In the year since it was established, the international drug purchase facility UNITAID has managed to reduce the price of HIV treatments for children by almost 40%, and those for second-line antiretroviral (ARV) drugs by between 25% and 50%. In collaboration with the Clinton Foundation, UNITAID has also delivered more than 33 000 paediatric treatments against HIV/AIDS and is on course to meet the needs of 100 000 children by the end of 2007.
Moreover, UNITAID has committed a total of US$ 45 million for second-line antiretroviral drugs to fund the treatment of 65 000 patients by 2008. Four countries (Botswana, Cameroon, Uganda and Zambia) have already received a first supply of second-line ARV drugs through UNITAID and a further 13 countries are currently awaiting delivery. UNITAID was launched in September 2006 during the United Nations General Assembly.
In partnership with the World Health Organization (WHO) and UNICEF, UNITAID has purchased and distributed 1.3 million Artemisinin-based Combination Therapies (ACT) in Burundi and Liberia. In addition, UNITAID is supporting ACT procurement and delivery to eight countries through collaboration with the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, and UNICEF. Delivery of the ACTs will begin in October 2007.
UNITAID is also contributing to the fight against tuberculosis together with the Global Drug Facility and the Stop TB Partnership. By the end of the year, UNITAID will have provided TB treatments to 150 000 children in 19 countries and will be supporting the provision of drugs for Multidrug - resistant TB in 17 low-income countries.
Background on UNITAID
The mandate of UNITAID is to contribute to the scaling up of access to treatments for HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis in developing countries by leveraging quality drugs and diagnostics price reductions and accelerating the pace at which these are made available. For each programme, UNITAID sets up an ad hoc partnership with existing organizations: WHO, UNICEF, the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, the Clinton Foundation (CHAI), Global Drug Facility/Green Light Committee and the Stop TB Partnership.
UNITAID offers beneficiary countries long-term support through sustainable and predictable funding, mobilized by innovative financing mechanisms, such as a solidarity contribution on air tickets, together with multi-year predictable budgetary contributions.
Based in Geneva, its Trust Fund and lean Secretariat are hosted by WHO. At present, 27 countries of which 19 are in Africa are members and hence contribute to UNITAID. At least 85% of UNITAID funds are spent in low income countries (LICs). The budget of UNITAID for 2007 is over US$ 300 million and 90% has already been committed to programmes in more than 80 countries.
For further information, please contact:
UNITAID communications officer
Tel.: +41 22 791 14 37
Mobile: +33 6 86 70 97 60
n/a Agreement reached on providing health care to displaced Iraqis
3 AUGUST 2007 | GENEVA/CAIRO/DAMASCUS -- Displaced Iraqis living in Egypt, Jordan and Syria should be eligible to receive health care on the same basis as the local population in these countries. This was one of the key agreements reached by participants at a ministerial consultation in Damascus on 29-30 July, convened by WHO to consider the health needs of Iraqis living in neighbouring countries.
n/a Innovative approach tackles malnutrition in the community
An innovative approach is showing progress in addressing severe acute malnutrition, which affects an estimated 20 million children under the age of five worldwide. The approach combines community-based care for severely malnourished children with traditional hospital-based treatment.
A statement by the World Health Organization (WHO), the World Food Programme (WFP), the United Nations Standing Committee on Nutrition (SCN) and UNICEF issued today highlights new evidence that about three-quarters of children with severe acute malnutrition – those who have a good appetite and no medical complications – can be treated at home with highly fortified, ready-to-use therapeutic foods (RUTFs).
23/05/2007 World Health Assembly ends with agreement on major public health issues
The World Health Assembly, the supreme decision-making body of WHO, wrapped up its 60th session today, with last-minute agreement on two key resolutions on pandemic influenza preparedness and public health, innovation and intellectual property. It adopted a record number of resolutions on public health issues and on the technical and administrative work of WHO, and approved the largest-ever budget for the Organization.