World Health Organisation Targets Urbanisation
The World Health Organisation (WHO) celebrated World Health Day on 7 April 2010. This year the event, which marked the organisation’s 62nd anniversary, kicked off a year-long campaign to highlight health threats arising from the worldwide trend toward urbanisation. Traditionally the WHO has fought to eliminate diseases and reduce the incidence of slums, poor sanitation and hunger. Health education plays a key role within the organisation’s mandate, and over the years its collaborative platform has successfully engaged governments in international co-operation to reduce both the spread and mortality rates of diseases such as malaria, tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS, cancer and SARS. The goals and ambitions set forth at this year’s World Health Day – themed ‘Urban Health Matters’ – are equally commendable, even if they do occasionally evince a touch of international nanny statism.