Latest news

Pacific leadership in new WHO global commission on noncommunicable diseases

SUVA, Fiji, 13 March 2018 - Globally communities are struggling to cope with the growing burden of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs), such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and cancers. In another step forward in combatting this epidemic, WHO has established an Independent Global High-level Commission on Noncommunicable Diseases, where the Tongan Minister of Health and Public Enterprises, Dr Saia Ma’u Piukala, has been appointed as one of the commissioners who will help raise awareness of the issues and experiences of NCDs in the Pacific.

Emergency health team deployed to earthquake-affected provinces of Papua New Guinea

PORT MORESBY, 08 March 2018 — As aftershocks continue to rattle the Hela and Southern Highlands provinces of Papua New Guinea, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the National Department of Health (NDOH) are working together to send support to the worst-affected communities. A devastating 7.5 magnitude earthquake struck the Southern Highlands and Hela Provinces on 26 February, triggering landslides that are reported to have wiped out villages, contaminated drinking water and disrupted rivers.

International Women's Day 2018: Celebrating women's leadership in health

8 March 2018 — How can we achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls? What does it mean to do so? What lessons have we learnt that can support progress towards this ambitious goal (Sustainable Development Goal 5) that nations of the world signed up to? On International Women's Day 2018, the WHO Regional Office for the Western Pacific approached women from different communities, age groups, occupations and positions throughout the Region and asked them to share their experiences and stories of leadership and inspiration.

WHO issues recommendations to tackle health impacts of air pollution in Mongolia

28 February 2018, ULAANBAATAR – The World Health Organization (WHO) today released a set of long-, medium- and short-term recommendations for the Government of Mongolia to tackle air pollution. Air pollution causes more than 4000 deaths every year in this Central Asian lower-middle income country with a population of 3 million. WHO is urging the Government to keep air pollution as a top priority for policies and implementation throughout the year.


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World Health day

Engage in World Health Day 2018
Universal Health Coverage: Everyone, Everywhere.

In this 70th anniversary year, WHO is calling on world leaders to live up to the pledges they made when they agreed the Sustainable Development Goals in 2015, and commit to concrete steps to advance #HealthForAll. This means ensuring that everyone, everywhere can access essential quality health services without facing financial hardship.

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Countries in focus

  • Lao PDR: Preventing leprosy-related disabilities in children
    February 2018
    The Ministry of Health conducted a review meeting to discuss the results from an intensified leprosy case findings activity that took place in Xiengkhuang Province in December last year. This review activity coincides with the World Leprosy Day that was marked on the last Sunday of January.
  • WHO Assistant Director-General advocates for universal health coverage towards Health for All in Cambodia
    February 2018
    WHO Assistant Director-General Dr. Naoko Yamamoto led a high-level visit to understand Cambodia’s progress and challenges towards universal health coverage from 2-4 February 2018.
  • Kiribati Butiraoi ferry disaster
    January 2018
    The World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) send their deepest condolences to the people of Kiribati following the recent Butiraoi ferry disaster. This is a tragic event for the country of Kiribati, and we extend our thoughts to those affected families and communities. WHO and UNICEF are closely coordinating with the Government of Kiribati to support the emergency response.
  • Mongolia: Investing in NCD prevention has significant economic impact
    January 2018
    Scaling up heart disease and tobacco control and reducing consumption of alcohol and salt are areas requiring increased investment in Mongolia to address noncommunicable diseases (NCDs), according to results from a review led by the United Nations Interagency Task Force (UNIATF) on NCDs.
  • Q&A on dengue vaccine
    December 2017
    We know there are still many concerns about the dengue vaccine, and we have received many questions following our post earlier this week. Here are some answers to the most frequently asked questions.

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 2017—a year of decisive action to tackle the Region’s health challenges.