Global Youth Tobacco Survey underscores urgent need to protect youth from tobacco harms

WHO/Y. Shimizu

MANILA, 28 June 2016 – One out of 12 students aged 13–15 years in 23 countries have used some form of tobacco. More than 4.2 million students are cigarette smokers in 22 countries in the Western Pacific Region. These alarming statistics come from a new report published by the World Health Organization (WHO). The report, Youth and tobacco in the Western Pacific Region: global youth tobacco survey (GYTS) 2005-2014, presents an overview of youth tobacco use in the Region, and highlights the need for continued vigilance and robust actions to protect youth from tobacco harms.

7 Million Deaths Averted through Hepatitis B Vaccination

WHO/Y. Shimizu
Vunapope, East New Britain Province, Papua New Guinea

Hong Kong, 22 June 2016 - New data shows that hepatitis B vaccination across the Western Pacific has averted 7 million deaths that would have occurred among children born between 1990 and 2014. This signifies a tremendous public health achievement for the Region. This significant achievement represents an important step towards the elimination of viral hepatitis as a public health threat in the Western Pacific Region by 2030.

Tenofovir reduces mother-to-child transmission of hepatitis B: new study

WHO/Y. Shimizu

GENEVA, 16 JUNE 2016 - New study findings published today confirm that antiviral therapy with tenofovir in late pregnancy can result in a 3-fold reduction in mother-to-child transmission (MTCT) of hepatitis B virus (HBV), when used in combination with immunoglobulin and HBV vaccine at birth.

World Blood Donor Day: Connecting everyone through the gift of life

MANILA, 14 June 2016 – On World Blood Donor Day, the World Health Organization (WHO) Western Pacific Region honours those who have saved countless lives by donating blood—the gift of life. "Blood connects us all" is the theme of this year's commemoration, which highlights the bond between regular donors and the people whose lives they saved. On this occasion, WHO reiterates its call for increased voluntary and unpaid blood donation, and encourages regular donors to continue to give.

Regional Director

Dr Shin Young-soo


Sixty-seventh session of the Regional Committee

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WHO Highlights

  • 7 April 2016

    World Health Day 2016: Together on the front lines against diabetes

    Diabetes can lead to blindness, amputation and a shorter lifespan. The illness is affecting people at a younger age. Financial and health impacts are devastating families and threatening health systems. On the frontline of the epidemic are individuals, families, communities and health workers that can take action to halt the rise of diabetes and its complications. Join us on 7 April 2016 for World Health Day as we take a stand against diabetes. Through collective action we can protect our families from this disease.

  • February 2016

    Tropical Cyclone Winston

    Tropical Cyclone Winston tore through Fiji on 20-21 February, resulting in 44 deaths, over 125 injured, and thousands without shelter, food, and safe water. In all, the cyclone affected the lives of an estimated 350,000 people. WHO is supporting the Fijian Ministry of Health and Medical Services in the health response to this disaster with help from many humanitarian partners.

  • 5 June 2015

    Strategy for malaria elimination in the Greater Mekong Subregion (2015-2030)

    In close consultation with countries in the Greater Mekong Subregion, the WHO Regional Offices for the Western Pacific and South-East Asia have developed a malaria elimination strategy for the Subregion, where emerging antimalarial multidrug resistance, including resistance to artemisinin-based combination therapies, is threatening our recent gains. The elimination strategy is fully aligned with the Global technical strategy for malaria 2016-2030, which has just been endorsed by the World Health Assembly. The first subregional document that effectively operationalizes the global strategy, it is a prime example of partnership and collaboration, with six countries, WHO (two regions and headquarters) and multiple development partners joining forces to fight a common threat.

  • April 2015

    20 years of the Healthy Island journey

    Yanuca Island, Fiji – The Eleventh Pacific Health Ministers meeting commenced in Yanuca Island, Fiji from 15-17 April 2015. The Pacific Ministers reviewed progress over the last 20 years in health and charted the course for the years to come. The first Pacific Health Ministers meeting in 1995 was also held in Yanuca Island, where ministers created a unifying Healthy Islands vision for Pacific island countries and areas. The meeting articulated a response to the specific needs of the region.

Highlighted publications

  • Regional Director's Report
    This report to the Regional Committee for the Western Pacific focuses on WHO’s work in the Region for the year ending 30 June 2014—a year of decisive action to tackle the Region’s health challenges.
  • Partners Coordination and Engagement Strategy 2013-2019
    This document outlines the Regional Office’s coordination and engagement strategy with health sector actors in the Western Pacific. WHO seeks to achieve better health outcomes for the people of the Region through improved coordination and strengthened partnerships.
  • The Health Systems in Transition (HiT)
    HiT profiles are health system reviews that systematically describe and assess the core components of a health system: organization and governance, financing, physical and human resources, service provision, and health reforms.