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Are you ready to support better health? Are you celebrating World Health Day? Well mark your calendars because this holiday is celebrated every April 7th. Below we will give you a few facts on this holiday in hopes that you too will celebrate and pass on the message of global health!
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History

​In 1948, the WHO held the First World Health Assembly. The Assembly decided to celebrate 7th April of each year, with effect from 1950, as the World Health Day. The World Health Day is held to mark WHO's founding, and is seen as an opportunity by the organization to draw worldwide attention to a subject of major importance to global health each year.[1] The WHO organizes international, regional and local events on the Day related to a particular theme. Resources provided continue beyond 7 April, that is, the designated day for celebrating the World Health Day.

World Health Day is acknowledged by various governments and non-governmental organizations with interests in public health issues, who also organize activities and highlight their support in media reports, such as through press releases issued in recent years by US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton[2] and the Global Health Council.
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Themes of the Worlds Health Day

  2014: Vector-borne diseases
  2013: Healthy heart beat, Healthy blood pressure
  2012: Good health adds life to years
  2011: Anti-microbial resistance: no action today, no cure tomorrow
  2010: Urbanisation and health: make cities healthier
  2009: Save lives, Make hospitals safe in emergencies
  2008: Protecting health from the adverse effects of climate change
  2007: International health security
  2006: Working together for health
  2005: Make every mother and child count

  2004: Road safety
  2003: Shape the future of life: healthy environments for children
  2002: Move for health
  2001: Mental Health: stop exclusion, dare to care
  2000: Safe Blood starts with me
  1999: Active aging makes the difference
  1998: Safe motherhood
  1997: Emerging infectious diseases
  1996: Healthy Cities for better life
  1995: Global Polio Eradication
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World Health Day 2014

World Health Day 2014 will spotlight some of the most commonly known vectors – such as mosquitoes, sandflies, bugs, ticks and snails – responsible for transmitting a wide range of parasites and pathogens that can cause many different illnesses. Mosquitoes, for example, transmit malaria - the most deadly vector-borne disease, causing an estimated 660 000 deaths annually worldwide - as well as dengue fever, lymphatic filariasis, chikungunya, Japanese encephalitis and yellow fever.[4]

The goal of the World Health Day 2014 campaign is better protection from vector-borne diseases, especially for families living in areas where diseases are transmitted by vectors, and travelers to countries where they pose a health threat. The campaign also advocates for health authorities in countries where vector-borne diseases are a public health problem or emerging threat, to put in place measures to improve surveillance and protection.
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Themes of previous World Health Days
2013: healthy blood pressure

The theme of World Health Day 2013, marked on 7 April 2013, was the need to control raised blood pressure (hypertension) as a "silent killer, global public health crisis".[5] The slogan for the campaign was "Healthy Heart Beat, Healthy Blood Pressure”.[6] The WHO reports hypertension - which is both preventable and treatable - contributes to the burden of heart disease, stroke and kidney failure, and is an important cause of premature death and disability. The organization estimates one in 3 adults has raised blood pressure.

Specific objectives of the World Health Day 2013 campaign were to:

  raise awareness of the causes and consequences of high blood pressure;
  provide information on how to prevent high blood pressure and related complications;
  encourage adults to check their blood pressure and follow the advice of healthcare professionals;
  encourage self care to prevent high blood pressure;
  to make blood pressure measurement affordable to all;
  to incite national and local authorities to create enabling environments for healthy behaviours.

2012: ageing and health

World Health Day 2012 was marked with the slogan "Good health adds life to years". Life expectancy is going up in most countries, meaning more and more people live longer and enter an age when they may need health care. Meanwhile birth rates are generally falling. Countries and health care systems need to find innovative and sustainable ways to cope with the demographic shift. As stated by John Beard, director of the WHO Department of Ageing and Life Course, "With the rapid ageing of populations, finding the right model for long-term care becomes more and more urgent."[7]

Different activities were organized by WHO as well as non-governmental and community organizations around the world to mark World Health Day 2012.[8] For example, Yogathon (an Art of Living Initiative) - a marathon of Surya Namaskar - happened in 100+ cities across the globe. Millions of people participated[9] in that event to make awareness of Yoga as a part of healthy living.[10] The event focused on prevention and not just medical treatment of chronic diseases, which remain unaffordable to many people.
2011: anti-microbial resistance

The theme of World Health Day 2011, marked on 7 April 2011, was "Antimicrobial resistance and its global spread" and focused on the need for governments and stakeholders to implement the policies and practices needed to prevent and counter the emergence of highly resistant microorganisms.

When infections caused by resistant microorganisms fail to respond to standard treatments, including antibiotics and other antimicrobial medicines - also known as drug resistance - this may result in prolonged illness and greater risk of death.

On World Health Day 2011, WHO called for intensified global commitment to safeguard antimicrobial medicines for future generations. The organization introduced a six-point policy package to combat the spread of antimicrobial resistance:[11][12]

  Commit to a comprehensive, financed national plan with accountability and civil society engagement.
  Strengthen surveillance and laboratory capacity.
  Ensure uninterrupted access to essential medicines of assured quality.
  Regulate and promote rational use of medicines, including in animal husbandry, and ensure proper patient care; reduce use of antimicrobials in food-producing animals.
  Enhance infection prevention and control.
  Foster innovations and research and development for new tools.
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See also
  • World AIDS Day
  • World Mental Health Day
  • World Health Report

References
World Health Organization: World Health Day http://www.who.int/mediacentre/events/annual/world_health_day/en/
Press Statement on World Health Day by Hillary Rodham Clinton, US Secretary of State, on April 7, 2010 http://www.state.gov/secretary/rm/2010/04/139594.htm
Global Health Council: World Health Day by Lara Endreszl, April 7, 2009 https://www.globalhealth.org/news/article/10976
World Health Organization, "World Health Day - 7 April 2014."
World Health Organization, "World Health Day Campaign 2013: Silent killer, global public health crisis."
World Health Organization EMRO, "World Health Day 7 April 2013."
"Defusing the demographic “time-bomb” in Germany." Bull World Health Organ 2012;90:6–7.
World Health Organization. Your World Health Day campaign: Links, events, contacts.
http://health.india.com/news/millions-participate-in-yogathon-to-mark-world-health-day/
Art of Living Foundation. Yogathon 2012.
World Health Organization. World Health Day 2011: policy briefs. Geneva, WHO, 2011 http://www.who.int/world-health-day/2011/policybriefs/en/index.html

External Links:
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Resources: This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses some material from Wikipedia/article / and other related pages. Top photo: homestead stock
The World Health Day is celebrated every year on 7 April, under the sponsorship of the World Health Organization (WHO).
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The flag of the World Health Organization (in Geneva).
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