National Days & Customs

World Health Day 2020

This year sees the 70th celebration of World Health Day, and with the current crisis caused by the spread of the Covid-19 virus, the focus on the world’s health has arguably never…

Nurses illustration that reads "support nurses and midwives"

This year sees the 70th celebration of World Health Day, and with the current crisis caused by the spread of the Covid-19 virus, the focus on the world’s health has arguably never been sharper.

However, there were other health issues facing the World Health Organisation (WHO) in 1948 when they decided to create World Health Day as a result of the World Health Assembly. The first World Health Day was held on April 7 1950 and has been held on that date every year since.

The aim is to promote awareness of health issues throughout the world and in more recent years, the WHO has based World Health Day around specific themes. The first themed day was in 1991 with the focus on the impact of disasters on health. Other themes have included a focus on heart health, polio eradication and mental health.

What is the Theme of World Health Day in 2020?

This year’s theme of World Health Day is celebrating nurses and midwives. On April 7, the WHO will be encouraging people around the world to remember the contribution that nurses and midwives make to the health of the world. The theme was picked to coincide with the International Year of the Nurse and Midwife and has been selected to help highlight the conditions many nurses are facing around the world.

The coronavirus outbreak has seen nurses thrust into the frontline in the battle to treat and slow the spread of the virus. They have been critical to the world’s fight against the disease, but nurses and midwives have constantly faced challenges in their day-to-day lives, even before Covid-19 gripped the world. 

One of the aims of this year’s World Health Day is that the nurses have all the resources they need to provide effective healthcare around the world. 

To mark World Health Day on April 7, the WHO is launching the State of the World’s Nursing report 2020. This is the first report of its kind and is designed to give a comprehensive view of nursing around the world. The report intends to conduct intensive research, gather data, speaking to policymakers and interest groups to gain a big picture of nursing in the world today. 

The WHO will also be using World Health Day as an opportunity to make its own recommendations about how nursing and midwifery can be made stronger around the world. 

What are the Other Aims of World Health Day?

As with every year, World Health Day will highlight the WHO’s core aims of universal healthcare around the world as well as reducing infant mortality rates and improve maternal health. 

The coronavirus crisis has seen the issue of infectious diseases race to the top of many people’s health agendas, but it is an issue that has always remained high up in the WHO’s priorities, especially around World Health Day.

On April 7, they will also be highlighting the need to strengthen emergency response procedures and the safety of patients in care, as well as a particular focus on mental health

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