Mains Functions and Objectives of World Health Organization are:
- To act as the directing and co-ordinating authority on international health work;
- To establish and maintain effective collaboration with the United Nations, specialized agencies, governmental health administrations, professional groups and such other organizations as may be deemed appropriate;
- To assist Governments, upon request, in strengthening health services;
- To furnish appropriate technical assistance and, in emergencies, necessary aid upon the request or acceptance of Governments;
- To provide or assist in providing, upon the request of the United Nations, health services and facilities to special groups, such as the peoples of trust territories;
- To establish and maintain such administrative and technical services as may be required, including epidemiological and statistical services;
- To stimulate and advance work to eradicate epidemic, endemic and other diseases
WHO and Covid-19
For all the responsibility vested in the WHO, it has little power. Unlike international bodies such as the World Trade Organization, the WHO, which is a specialised body of the UN, has no ability to bind or sanction its members. Its annual operating budget, about $2bn in 2019, is smaller than that of many university hospitals, and split among a dizzying array of public health and research projects.
At the same time, the international order on which the WHO relies is fraying, as aggressive nationalism becomes normalised around the world. “All the previous rules about global norms, public health and understanding of what’s expected in terms of an outbreak has crumbled,” said Lawrence Gostin, director of the WHO Collaborating Center on National and Global Health Law.