Unprecedented “virtual” WHA responds to pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic informed both the content and the format of the 73rd World Health Assembly (WHA) on Monday and Tuesday (May 18–19), as WHO’s decision-making body met via video conferencing technology for the first time and focused on the COVID-19 response and essential governance matters.
U.S. critical of WHO, China

WHO executive board considers FENSA changes, appoints regional directors

The 146th session of the WHO Executive Board met February 3–8 in Geneva. Notable topics of discussion included access to medicines and the need to implement the Global Strategy and Plan of Action on Public Health, Innovation and Intellectual Property (GSPA), reducing the harmful use of alcohol, and modifications to civil society and non-State actors’ participation under FENSA (the Framework of Engagement of non-State Actors).

Report finds “unacceptable workplace behaviors” at UNICEF

An independent task force commissioned by UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore in August 2018 released its report this month revealing that UNICEF has an “unhealthy organizational culture” resulting in the concealment of “unacceptable workplace behaviors [that have] allowed abuse of authority, harassment, sexual harassment and discrimination to proliferate in silence.” The task force conducted more than 350 interviews with staff members from duty stations and regional offices around the


WHO probes racism, misconduct allegations

January 31, 2019 — WHO said earlier this month that it was taking seriously several anonymous whistleblower emails alleging racism, sexism and corruption within the organization.

Addressed to senior WHO managers, complaints included African staff members being “abused, sworn at (and) shown contempt to” by their Geneva-based colleagues, “crooked recruitment and selection” processes, and misspending of Ebola funds in West Africa and DRC.

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