News and top stories

Countries vow to combat malnutrition

19 November 2014 -- In a major step towards eradicating malnutrition worldwide, over 170 countries today made a number of concrete commitments and adopted a series of recommendations on policies and investments aimed at ensuring that all people have access to healthier and more sustainable diets. Ministers and senior officials responsible for health, food or agriculture and other aspects of nutrition adopted the Rome Declaration on Nutrition, and a Framework for Action.

UN reveals major gaps in water and sanitation – especially in rural areas

19 November 2014 -- Global efforts to provide improved water and sanitation are gaining momentum. However, serious gaps in funding continue to slow progress, according to a new report from WHO on behalf of UN-Water. While international aid for the sector is on the rise, there continue to be major financial gaps at the country level, particularly in rural areas.

Global impact of drowning

17 November 2014 -- WHO’s first “Global report on drowning: preventing a leading killer” reveals that drowning claims the lives of 372 000 people each year and is among the 10 leading causes of death for children and young people in every region. The report calls for increasing resources to prevent drowning and provides actions that can be taken by both policy-makers and local communities, all of which could save many young lives.

Ebola: identifying the cause of death

17 November 2014 -- Dead bodies can be very contagious when it comes to Ebola, but that does not mean that every deceased person has died due to the disease. In order to speed up the process of identifying the cause of death of each patient, WHO is working closely with the Liberia Institute for Biomedical Research to train burial teams on how to collect an oral swab from deceased patients safely.

Progress towards eliminating measles has stalled

13 November 2014 -- The number of deaths from measles increased from an estimated 122 000 in 2012 to 145 700 in 2013, according to new data. However, the estimated number of measles deaths in 2013 still represents a 75% decline in mortality since 2000, but it is significantly below the target of a 95% reduction in deaths between 2000 and 2015.


  • Global burden of preterm birth
    November 2014 -- Every year, an estimated 15 million babies are born preterm, which is defined as babies born alive before 37 weeks of pregnancy are completed. This is more than one in 10 babies – and these numbers are rising. WHO is committed to preventing and reducing the health problems and lives lost as a result of preterm birth.
  • Legionellosis fact sheet update
    November 2014 -- Legionellosis is caused by exposure to Legionella species found in water, and potting mixes. It varies in severity from a mild febrile illness to a serious and sometimes fatal form of pneumonia.
  • Statement on Tetanus Toxoid vaccine
    November 2014 -- WHO is concerned that misinformation circulating in the media about the Tetanus Toxoid vaccine could have a seriously negative impact on the health of women and children.

Fact sheets


Isabelle Nuttall, Director, Global Capacities, Alert and Response, WHO

Ebola: What you need to know

Tho body of a person who has died from Ebola should only be handled by trained staff


Tweets from WHO