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CGHH at the 2018 World Health Assembly

Posted on 25 June 2018

The Centre was once again represented at the World Health Assembly, where research on the history of community health workers was showcased.

The 71st World Health Assembly was held between 21-26th May 2018. The Assembly is the supreme decision-making body of WHO which is attended by delegations from all WHO Member States. The Assembly is held annually in Geneva, Switzerland (although historically this has not always been the case), and the main function of the Assembly is to determine the policies of the Organization and approve the proposed programme budget.

CGHH was represented during the Assembly at a side event on community health workers (CHWs), held on the 21st May titled 'Primary Health Care and Universal Health Coverage: the evidence on contributions and effectiveness of community health workers. The event attracted high-level delegates, policymakers, civil society organizations, youth and health workers. Dr Joao Nunes (Department of Politics) and Dr Alexander Medcalf (CGHH) have been working with the WHO Health Workforce Department to develop an exhibition on the history of the role of CHWs, drawing on research undertaken as part of their Wellcome Trust Seed Award. At the side event this linkup and exhibition was previewed on a number of panels displayed in the room and via the audio visual presentation. The finalised exhibition, due for display later in 2018, will comprise photographs of community health workers and their diverse roles drawn from the WHO’s historic visual archive.

You can read a WHO report on this side event via the WHO website.

We look forward to sharing more on this linkup and the forthcoming exhibition in due course, but in the meantime would like to extend heartfelt thanks all those involved for helping to showcase this work at this high-profile event.

CHW WHA side event photo. Credit Shiva Murugasampillay

One of the exhibition preview panels in situ at the WHA side event. Courtesy of Shiva Murugasampillay.

To read more about CGHH's involvement in previous World Health Assemblies, please see the news stories from 2014 and 2015.