WHO’s Chan Tells Executive Board Reform Is Necessary Under Budget Constraints

WHO Director-General Margaret Chan on Tuesday at the opening session of the agency’s Executive Board special session on reform in Geneva “stressed that planned reforms are intended to make the agency more efficient as it strives to improve global health amid multiple challenges that have an impact on human well-being,” the U.N. News Centre reports (11/1). Chan said “proposed reforms would see the agency become more streamlined and deliver ‘measurable results’ at country level” and “acknowledged … that parts of the WHO had become rigid and unresponsive,” the Associated Press/CTV News writes. She “urged WHO’s 34 board members to safeguard the agency’s role as global health guardian despite growing competition and budget constraints,” according to the news agency (11/1).

The agency also “announced on Tuesday that it is to abandon its proposed World Health Forum project,” Agence France-Presse reports. “‘The proposal for a World Health Forum received little support. Therefore we will not pursue this any further,’ Chan said,” the news agency reports. “The WHO, with a budget this year of $2.2 billion, has said that it expects a $330 million deficit due to plunging voluntary contributions,” AFP writes (11/1).