The past year really brought out the gaps in our healthcare facilities and the gnawing divide between those who can easily avail them and those who cannot. While COVID-19 might have taught us so much about the transience of life, it has also thoroughly revealed its unfair side. Healthcare across the world is crumbling today. In fact, it was crumbling all this while and the pandemic just revealed its true state. This explains why the World Health Organisation has decided to raise the topic of a fairer, more equal world for World Health Day 2021. From World health day’s date to this year’s theme, here’s everything that you need to know about the day:
World Health Day is celebrated on April 7 every year. The day also commemorates the founding of the World Health Organisation which took place in 1948.
Celebrated under the Sponsorship of the World Health Organisation, the World Health Day commemorates the very first World Health Assembly organised by the organisation in 1948. Thus, world health day’s history goes back to WHO’s history with being intrinsically connected. Each year, the World Health Day theme varies so as to bring attention to a new issue pertaining to healthcare. Here are some of the themes that have been observed as a part of World Health Day over the years:
2000: Safe Blood starts with me
2001: Mental Health: stop exclusion, dare to care
2002: Move for health
2003: Shape the future of life: healthy environments for children
2004: Road safety
2005: Make every mother and child count
2006: Working together for health
2007: International health security
2008: Protecting health from the adverse effects of climate change
2009: Save lives, Make hospitals safe in emergencies
2010: Urbanization and health: make cities healthier
2011: Antimicrobial resistance: no action today, no cure tomorrow
2012: Good health adds life to years
2013: Healthy heartbeat, Healthy blood pressure
2014: Vector-borne diseases: small bite, big threat
2015: Food safety
2016: Halt the rise: beat diabetes
2017: Depression: Let's talk
2018: Universal Health Coverage: everyone, everywhere
2019: Universal Health Coverage: everyone, everywhere
2020: Support Nurses and Midwives
World Health Day is observed to throw attention to issues related to both mental and physical health. Each year, the day is used to bring to light a pressing aspect of health and healthcare worldwide. World Health Day is observed by the government and non-government health bodies across the world with the sole aim of promoting healthy living habits. World health day’s significance lies in the fact that over the years it has played an instrumental role in pointing out healthcare gaps and initiating conversations to bridge them. Currently, the day stands all the more crucial given the coronavirus health crisis that has been staring us in the face for over a year now. Right now as new strains of COVID-19 come to light, they possess a huge challenge to our healthcare experts and scientists. Hence, it is important to understand the importance of preventive measures. The need also is to understand that currently vaccination is the only answer to the pandemic and thus, we need to reach out to as many people and convince them to go for it.
We live in an unequal world. As the COVID-19 pandemic has already highlighted, this world caters to its citizens differently. Thus, while some of us have the access to the best healthcare facilities and services, others struggle to get even the most basic healthcare necessities. However, WHO believes that not only is this unnecessary but also preventable. Thus, comes the world health day 2021 theme which is “Building a fairer, healthier world.”
This year, WHO has urged countries and leaders to step up and ensure equality when it comes to healthcare. “We are calling on leaders to ensure that everyone has living and working conditions that are conducive to good health. At the same time we urge leaders to monitor health inequities and to ensure that all people are able to access quality health services when and where they need them,” reads the official website.
COVID-19, of course, has had a more harrowing impact on underprivileged communities with little to no access to healthcare. Through World Health Day 2021, WHO thus seems to bridge this gap.
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Featured Image: WHO