From 23 January to 01 February 2017, the World Health Organization (WHO) will host the 140th session of the Executive Board (EB) at the WHO headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland. As always, the World Heart Federation will be participating in this meeting, with our Board Members, members of the advocacy team and WHF Sustaining Partners in attendance.
The EB – which is held in January each year – is comprised of 34 members from all six WHO regions. These countries serve on three-year rotations, however all WHO Member States (countries) participate in the discussions. During the meeting, Member States debate pressing global health issues and propose draft resolutions to tackle these problems, which are then submitted for consideration by the World Health Assembly in May.
The World Heart Federation will be advocating strongly for improved CVD prevention and control throughout the week, with a particular focus on addressing the global shortage of essential medicines and vaccines, promoting the health of migrants, and the importance of considering rheumatic heart disease within the new Global Strategy for Women’s, Children’s and Adolescents’ Health.
Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) also feature prominently on the agenda: of particular importance will be the discussion on countries’ Preparations for the third High-level Meeting of the General Assembly on the Prevention and Control of Non-communicable Diseases. This meeting – to be held in New York City in 2018 – will play a vital role in holding Member States accountable by measuring their progress towards global targets to tackle NCDs.
Other items on the agenda at the Executive Board include preparedness, surveillance and response, health systems, communicable diseases, and promotion of health through the life course. Within each topic, specialized reports are prepared by the Secretariat, providing context and details on specific agenda items. The next phase in the upcoming election of the new WHO Director-General will also take place: during the meeting the number of candidates nominated for election at the World Health Assembly will be reduced from six to three.