You guessed it right! WHO it self is undergoing a major process of reform. This organization is the only institution capable of providing a balanced platform for global discussion on the future of our health, while taking into account diverse interests and priorities. So what has changed so sudden that it is a need for such a reform?
The answer to the question is quite complex, but yet breaks down one simple fact, we live in a complex and rapid changing world. The growth of big philanthropical entities and global economical crisis is putting WHOs supreme position into a unprecedented challenge. What started as a simple financial issue turned into a full fledged change, touching almost all working areas of WHO.
The three main purposes for the this process is as following:
- Refocusing core business to address the 21st century health challenges facing countries;
- Reforming the financing and management of WHO to address health challenges more effectively;
- Transforming governance to strengthen global health.
The process of reform is Member State-driven, and Director General (DG) Dr. Margret Chan, does not save the ammunition to explain this fact, stating “You are the bosses!”. From the 129th Executive Board (EB) Meeting, it has been published a number of concept papers by the WHO secretariat explaining the reform process in details, thereby it has been an extensive consultation process with the member states which leads us up to the EB Special Session (EBSS) which is taking place right now.
Fundamental questions about WHO’s priorities, its changing role in global health governance, and internal governance and managerial reforms is going to be discussed amongst the EB members (http://www.who.int/governance/eb/eb_members/en/index.html). The decisions made during this special event will lay the foundation for the future of this agency. Its needed for WHO to be more effective and accountable to address the increasingly complex challenges of the health of populations in the 21st century.
Stay tuned, we will update from Geneva as the action unveils!
The IFMSA team to EBSS
Usman, Alex and Lukas