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WHS 2023 Daily News

Health Equity in Focus
Day two of World Health Summit 2023: GFF pledging, 75 years of WHO, gender equality, pandemic prevention

Berlin, October 16, 2023
On the second day of the World Health Summit 2023 the focus was on topics such as a healthier future for women and girls in the poorest countries of the world, pandemic prevention, 75 years of WHO, and gender equality in health research.

At the Global Financing Pledging Event, a high-level donor gathering, Svenja Schulze, German Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development, said, "Women’s rights are human rights." Girls and women make up 50 per cent of the world’s population: “Only girls who are healthy and able to make decisions about their own bodies can grow up to become educated and self-sufficient women who enjoy the same rights, resources and representation as men.” 

The Global Financing Facility Partnership aims to secure a healthier future for more than 250 million women, children and youth in the world's poorest countries.

The 75th anniversary of the World Health Organisation (WHO) was the topic of the keynote session in the morning. The health of billions of people is under threat from conflict, air pollution and the climate crisis, and aggressively-marketed products that harm health, said Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus WHO Director-General: “All these challenges show why the world needs a strong WHO now more than ever.” WHO faces its own challenges, Dr. Tedros added: “The world’s expectations of WHO have increased substantially but our resources have not.”

Pandemic preparedness was at the center of the morning session. “In pandemic prevention, we’re often ignoring livestock”, said Christian Drosten, Director of the Institute of Virology at Charité. It is known that respiratory pathogens were transmitted from wild animal hosts to humans through livestock: “We’re ignoring this in the policy making. We have to implement livestock surveillance.”

Joy Phumaphi, Co-Chair of the Global Preparedness Monitoring Board, called for better funding: “Coming up with a platform for matching human and animal health. That needs a lot of resources, it’s not easy to do.”

Gender equality was the topic at the launch of the Equity 2030 Alliance, a new global partnership for equitable and women-focused research and innovation. “Women walk through a world that was not built for them,” said United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Executive Director Natalia Kanem. “Yet we can redesign the world. We can resolve this challenge if we unite and commit to equity by design, whether in tech, science or finance. The impact will last for generations to come.”

Impression of the Day

Don't miss these special events at WHS 2023

Tuesday, October 17

12:45 PM - 1:45 PM, Room Europe
PD 21a – Launch of the Community Health Delivery Partnership
Hosts: United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), United States Agency for International Development (USAID)
More info

4:00 PM - 05:30 PM, Room Rudolf Virchow
KEY 07 – G7/G20 Measures to Enhance Global Health Equity and Security
Final session with conclusions of three days WHS and future perspectives
More info

In case you couldn’t make it to Berlin: Join the World Health Summit 2023 online for free, links and all info on the program are available on

In case you missed a speaker or a session: Rewatch it all on YouTube.

Share your impressions and opinions on #WHS2023 on TwitterLinkedInFacebookInstagram

The World Health Summit is the unique international strategic global health forum and brings together stakeholders from politics, science, the private sector, and civil society from all regions of the world. The World Health Summit 2023 is once again held under the patronage of German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, French President Emmanuel Macron, and the Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO), Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. More than 300 speakers in over 60 sessions discuss topics like climate change and health, pandemic preparedness, prevention, and response, digital technologies, the role of the G7 and G20 in global health, and 75 years of WHO. Under the theme "A Defining Year for Global Health Action", WHS 2023 will set the agenda for a healthier future by inspiring innovative solutions for better health and well-being for all.

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