World Health Day 2021

On World Health Day, 7 April 2021, we will be inviting you to join a new campaign to build a fairer, healthier world. We’ll be posting more details here shortly, but here’s why we’re doing this:

Our world is an unequal one.
As COVID-19 has highlighted, some people are able to live healthier lives and have better access to health services than others – entirely due to the conditions in which they are born, grow, live, work and age.

All over the world, some groups struggle to make ends meet with little daily income, have poorer housing conditions and education, fewer employment opportunities, experience greater gender inequality, and have little or no access to safe environments, clean water and air, food security and health services. This leads to unnecessary suffering, avoidable illness, and premature death. And it harms our societies and economies.

This is not only unfair: it is preventable. That’s why we are calling on leaders to ensure that everyone has living and working conditions that are conducive to good health.  At the same time we urge leaders to monitor health inequities, and to ensure that all people are able to access quality health services when and where they need them.

COVID-19 has hit all countries hard, but its impact has been harshest on those communities which were already vulnerable, who are more exposed to the disease, less likely to have access to quality health care services and more likely to experience adverse consequences as a result of measures implemented to contain the pandemic.

WHO is committed to ensuring that everyone, everywhere, can realize the right to good health.

We need leaders to:

Work together
Work hand in hand with affected communities and individuals to address the root causes of inequities and to implement solutions – within and beyond the health sector – to address them. The impact will be greatest when governments and communities work together, in a coordinated approach.

Collect reliable data

Ensure collection and use of timely and reliable health data – disaggregated by gender, age, income, education, migratory status, disability, geographic location and other characteristics relevant to the national context. Only then is it possible to assess inequities across population subgroups and take actions that have impact.

Tackle inequities

Adopt a whole-of-government approach to tackling the root causes of inequities and increase investment in primary health care. This is key to meeting today’s challenges of ensuring Health for All and to building the resilience of tomorrow.

Act beyond borders

Act beyond national borders. For example, only when we can protect, test and treat the whole global population can we end the COVID-19 pandemic. As well as assuring an equitable supply of vaccines, tests and treatments, we must strengthen national and international mechanisms and build community trust and participation into their delivery and uptake to ensure access for all globally. 


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