Our Planet, Our Health
Are we able to reimagine a world where clean air, water and food are available to all? Where economies are focused on health and well-being? Where cities are liveable, and people have control over their health and health of the planet?
In the midst of a pandemic, a polluted planet, increasing diseases like cancer, asthma, heart disease, on World Health Day 2022, WHO will focus global attention on urgent actions needed to keep humans and the planet healthy and foster a movement to create societies focused on well-being. WHO estimates that more than 13 million deaths around the world each year are due to avoidable environmental causes, This includes the climate crisis which is the single biggest health threat facing humanity. The climate crisis is also a health crisis.
Well-being societies are healthy societies
Our political, social and commercial decisions are driving the climate and health crisis. Over 90 per cent of people breathe unhealthy air resulting from burning of fossil fuels. A heating world is seeing mosquitos spread diseases further and faster than ever before. Extreme weather events, land degradation and water scarcity are displacing people and affecting their health. Pollution and plastics are found at the bottom of our deepest oceans, the highest mountains, and have made their way into our food chain. Systems to produce ultra-processed, unhealthy foods and beverages are driving a wave of obesity, increasing cancer and heart disease while generating a third of greenhouse gas emissions.
Through the “Our Planet, Our Health’’ campaign, WHO will urge governments and the public to share stories of steps they are taking to protect the planet and their health and prioritize well-being societies.
The World Health Organization (WHO) is the leading global health authority within the United Nations System. The work of WHO is varied and can mostly be summarized through their 6-point agenda.
- Promote Development – poverty is linked to poor health; by promoting development poverty falls and the overall health of a given population improves.
- Fosters Health Security – WHO takes steps to increase health security by reducing health risks from outbreaks of new, existing & mutating diseases.
- Strengthens Health Systems – in poorer countries many health systems are inadequate. WHO strengthens these systems through various means which may include the provision of funding, access to drugs and relevant technology, data collection systems and trained staff.
- Harnesses information, research and evidence – WHO uses evidence as a sound basis for setting health priorities, strategies and measuring results. In consultation with leading health experts, WHO provides authoritative health information.
- Enhances Partnerships – WHO works closely with many health organizations around the world. WHO aims to improve or enhance the work of these organizations by encouraging them to use their evidence based practices and follow their technical guidelines when implementing their health programs.
- Improves Performance – WHO also strives to improve the performance of its own organization. In order to improve the performance or effectiveness of an organization there needs to be clear results which can be measured and compared. WHO improves performance by implementing results based management, which provide clear results and goals which can be measured on a regional, country or international level.
WHO use the anniversary of their founding day not only as an opportunity to celebrate the organization and its work but also as an opportunity to highlight a current global health priority.