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World Health Assembly Discusses Progress on Health-related MDGs

WHO26 May 2012: The 65th session of the World Health Assembly, the supreme decision making body of the World Health Organization (WHO), endorsed a report on progress and achievements of the health-related Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and global health goals after 2015. Member States noted that, while progress towards achieving health-related MDGs has accelerated, further action is needed to achieve the goals by 2015.

The report recognizes substantial progress in reducing child and maternal mortality, improving nutrition, and reducing morbidity and mortality due to HIV infection, tuberculosis and malaria. It further states that progress in countries with the highest mortality rates has accelerated while large gaps persist within and between countries.

The report nonetheless stresses that much work remains to be done if the health-related MDGs are to be achieved by 2015. Regarding global health goals beyond 2015, the report notes the need to reflect new challenges, including rapid urbanization, ageing populations, economic uncertainty and the impacts of climate change. It further calls for: adopting new approaches to development; better reflecting health in the definition of development goals and measurement of progress; incorporating lessons learned; and better defining the WHO's role.

The World Health Assembly convened from 1-26 May 2012, in Geneva, Switzerland. Member States adopted 21 decisions and resolutions, including on: humanitarian emergencies; international health regulations; noncommunicable diseases; pandemic influenza preparedness; research and development; and social determinants of health. During the session, participants received progress reports in six areas: strengthening of health systems; disease eradication, prevention and control; reproductive health; food safety initiatives; climate change and health; partnerships and multilingualism. [WHO Press Release] [WHA 65 Website] [Progress Report on Health-related MDGs]