On 21 November 2017, the new WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra’ad al Hussein, signed a Framework for Cooperation in response to the recommendations of the High Level Working Group for the Health and Human Rights of Women, Children and Adolescents.

The Working Group, co-chaired by HE Tarja Halonen, former President of Finland, and Hina Jilani of the Elders, presented its report to the World Health Assembly in May and the Human Rights Council in June. The report identified practical recommendations to better operationalise human rights to achieve the targets in the Global Strategy for Women’s, Children’s and Adolescents’ Health (2016-2030).

The WHO-OHCHR Framework of Cooperation calls for building capacity at country level to implement rights-based approaches, and strengthening the way in which health issues are considered by existing human rights mechanisms. The initial term of the Framework of Cooperation is four years, and both agencies will review progress annually.

Member States met in Geneva for a special session of WHO Executive Board to discuss the organization’s Global Programme of Work for 2019-2023, in which WHO commits to promoting the implementation of gender equality, equity and a rights-based approach to health that enhance participation, build resilience, and empower communities to realize their right to health.


SOURCE: WHO, November 2017