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Advocacy at the World Health Organization

WHF is the only CVD organization in official relations with the WHO

Home > Global Advocacy > Advocacy at the World Health Organization

Advocating directly to the WHO for improved CVD prevention and control

Using our strategic location in Geneva, at the World Heart Federation we are able to advocate directly to key decision-makers at the World Health Organization (WHO) for improved CVD prevention and control. We work with WHO in a number of ways:

  • Attending and advocating at global and regional meetings organized by WHO
  • Aligning our ‘25 by 25’ CVD target with the WHO goal of achieving a 25% reduction in premature mortality from NCDs by the year 2025
  • Supporting the WHO Global Coordinating Mechanism
  • Responding to consultations on CVD-related health topics

WHF Advocacy at WHO Meetings 

The World Heart Federation Advocacy Team are able to attend a number of regional and global events to advocate for improved CVD prevention and control.

The Executive Board (EB) meetings are held twice annually in January and May/June. During the meeting, Member States debate pressing global health issues and propose draft resolutions to tackle these problems, which are then submitted for consideration by the World Health Assembly.

The World Health Assembly (WHA) is the main decision-making & governing body of the World Health Organization (WHO), where countries – or ‘Member States’ – debate and decide on key global health issues. Taking place in May in Geneva each year, its agenda is largely determined by the WHO Executive Board meetings.

The WHO Regional Committee Meetings offer us an additional advocacy opportunity. Held annually from August-October, these meetings address pressing health issues specific to each of the 6 WHO Regions.

At each of these meetings, the WHF Advocacy Team have the opportunity to make statements during Agenda Items relevant to CVD and NCDs, as well as related topics such as shortages of essential medicines and the health of refugees and migrants.

The WHO Executive Board, World Health Assembly and WHO Regional Committee Meetings also gather important health actors and decision-makers together at a time, presenting valuable opportunities to advocate for improved CVD prevention and control.


WHF Policy Statements at WHO Meetings

WHO Global Action Plan on NCDs

Providing a roadmap and policy options to achieve the global 25 by 25 targets

To accelerate the UN’s commitments to address NCDs in 2011, the World Health Organization created a Global Action Plan for the Prevention and Control of NCDs, which lasts from 2013-2020. This document, also known as the ‘GAP’, was written in collaboration with the World Heart Federation and other health stakeholders, and provides countries with a plan of action and menu of policy options to reduce their burden of CVD.

The Global Action Plan (GAP) recognizes that governments have a primary role and responsibility to play in responding to the challenge of NCDs, but require the support of international organizations and other experts. It is structured around a WHO goal of achieving a 25% reduction in premature mortality from NCDs by the year 2025.  From this broad NCD goal, the World Heart Federation set its own ambitious global goal of reducing premature death from CVD by 25% by 2025.

WHO Global Monitoring Framework

Providing a framework to track progress towards the global 25 by 25 targets

To support the GAP, the WHO created the NCD Global Monitoring Framework (GMF) to track progress in preventing and controlling the four major NCDs. The GMF tracks progress on NCDs against the nine voluntary global targets highlighted in the GAP, so is a key tool to hold countries accountable to their UN commitments. The framework is also intended to provide the foundation for advocacy, raising awareness, reinforcing political commitment and promoting global action.

WHO Global Coordinating Mechanism

Created in 2014, the WHO Global Coordination Mechanism on NCDs (GCM) was established to support the implementation of the Global Action Plan (GAP) and Global Monitoring Framework (GMF) by coordinating activities, engagement and cross-sector action. Led by Member States, other participants include United Nations organizations, non-governmental organizations and academic institutions.

The World Heart Federation has participated actively in the GAP, GMF and GCM since their inception, both independently and through the NCD Alliance.