The World Health Organization (WHO) was established in April 7 th, 1948 with the idea of preventing diseases in different countries. It is the directing and coordinating authority for health within the United Nations system. This organization is responsible for providing leadership on global health matters, shaping the health research agenda, setting norms and standards, articulating evidence-based policy options, providing technical support to countries and monitoring and assessing health trends. The mechanisms for action that WHO possesses includes promoting socioeconomic development, fostering health security, enhancing health systems, mobilizing research, strengthening partnerships and bettering healthcare reforms. Beginning with promoting socioeconomic development, this sector deals with how healthcare is affected by poverty and it makes sure that the activities provided by WHO benefits disadvantaged people. The fostering health security sector deals with the outbreaks of “epidemic-prone diseases” caused by environmental factors, food processing and the misapplication of medicines. Additionally, WHO reaches out to the impoverished populations with the help of trained staff and getting financial support from partnerships such as UN agencies, donors, and the private sector that help buy the drugs and technology that are needed to help these people in need. This organization also collects data for research where leading experts in healthcare come together and form “evidence-based policy options” and promote a better health care system for people around the world. With the environment constantly changing- politically, economically and socially, WHO aims to effectively reach out to people internationally by following the Six Point Agenda, which mainly focuses on two health objectives, two strategic needs, and two operational approaches. Recently WHO is evolving to meet healthcare obstacles of the growing population around the world by providing reform programs which address global health issues and focusing on areas that need the most help while finding ways to finance these initiatives. The World Health Organization has set a new standard for global health, and the first major breakthrough came in 1988 when the polio eradication initiative was established. This movement was led by WHO, UNICEF, and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The ultimate goal was to wipe out polio from the face of earth. Although WHO has had several successes in health care around the world, it has also had several setbacks. For instance, when WHO declared that Malaria would be eradicated, the disease had gained resistance to drugs, making it difficult to treat. Also diseases such as Cholera, Diarrhea, Tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS remain prevalent due to the misuse or inability to gain access to medication in a timely manner. Approximately six million people in developing countries have HIV infections that require antiretroviral treatment. But fewer than 300,000 are being treated. In sub -Saharan Africa, where most of the people in need of treatment live, only 50,000 people are receiving treatment. Today, the World Health Organization fights diseases like malaria. The World Health Organization – along with Roll Back Malaria global partnership (RBM), UNDP, UNICEF, and the World Bank are taking initiative to reduce the cost of treating malaria. RBM’s main goal is to prevent the spread of malaria and make chemically treated mosquito nets available to areas in which malaria is prevalent. In South Africa, for example, anti-malaria campaigns are providing insecticides to protect communities that are vulnerable to mosquitos. In the 21st century, health is a shared responsibility that will require collaboration and cooperation from multiple organizations to better provide access to essential care and defend against transnational pandemics.
1. Mental Health for Youth in Conflict-Regions and in the Developed World
Millions of children around the world are currently in areas of conflict. The toll that this conflict has on the state of children’s mental health remains horribly detrimental. Many children suffer from PTSD, anxiety, and a myriad of other mental health issues due to the effects of living in areas of conflict. The World Health Organization currently has been active in responding to viral disease issues and vaccination problems for children in conflicted areas. The one area it has lacked devoting resources to is mental health for children. Focusing more on dealing with these specific issues that children face and receive very poor support for is a major concern that the World Health Organization must address.
2. Stemming the Proliferation of Multidrug-Resistant Bacteria
The mishandling of antibiotic diagnosis has created a severe problem for the world. Overusing antibiotics has caused for resistant strains of bacteria to form and proliferate. Numerous strains of bacteria have appeared early this year that seem to be resilient to multiple forms of antibiotics. Medical practitioners around the world are forced to develop stronger forms of antibiotic resistance to match the growing strength of bacteria and find an efficient way of implementing these newly developed drugs before the proliferation of drug resistant bacteria gets out of hand. The G20 conference has already produced a multi-national focus on stopping the outbreak and spread of drug-resistant bacteria. The World Health Organization needs to join in on the cause to stop the spread and appearance of these types of bacteria.